Rolls Royce Tax Evasion: Madras HC Imposes Rs 1 lakh Fine On Tamil Actor Vijay, Comes Down Heavily On Cinestars For Portraying Themselves As 'Anti-Corruption Warriors'

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The Madras High Court has dismissed a writ petition moved by Kollywood actor C Joseph Vijay (popularly known as Vijay) seeking to restrain tax authorities from demanding or collecting entry tax on a 'Rolls Royce Ghost' car that was imported from England.

Justice S M Subramaniam pointed out that cine stars like Vijay enjoy a large fan base which views actors as "real heroes". Actors who portray themselves as champions of social justice and against corruption should not evade tax, the Court added.

The Court proceeded to direct Vijay to pay the 20% entry tax as demanded by the authorities within two weeks from the receipt of a copy of the Court's order.

The Madras High Court has dismissed a writ petition moved by Kollywood actor C Joseph Vijay (popularly known as Vijay) seeking to restrain tax authorities from demanding or collecting entry tax on a 'Rolls Royce Ghost' car that was imported from England.

C.Joseph Vijay vs The State Of Tamil Nadu on 28 June, 2019

Justice S M Subramaniam imposed the cost for the actor’s attempt to evade tax by challenging the tax demand made by the commercial tax department.

The amount would go to the Tamil Nadu Chief Minister’s Public Relief to fight Covid-19.

The Judge pointed out that cine stars like Vijay enjoy a large fan base which views actors as "real heroes". Actors who portray themselves as champions of social justice and against corruption should not evade tax, the Court added.

"Their pictures are against corrupt activities in the society. But, they are evading tax and acting in a manner, which is not in consonance with the provisions of the Statutes," the order further read.

Dismissing the plea moved by Vijay, the judge said the actor had largescale fan groups. “Those fans see such actors as real heroes. In a state like Tamil Nadu, where such actors have become rulers of the state, they are not expected to behave like a ‘reel hero'

While the common man is motivated and encouraged to behave as a lawful citizen and pay tax and to thrive hard to achieve social justice in the society, the rich, affluent and reputed persons fail to pay tax, the judge added.

Noting that non-payment of entry tax by the petitioner could never be appreciated, the judge said the actor should respect the sentiments of lakhs and lakhs of his fans, who watch his movies by paying for the ticket. “It is only out of such money that the petitioner has purchased the prestigious’ car for his personal usage,” the court said.

The court added that made these observations with a fond hope that the petitioner and other similarly placed citizens of this great nation would pay their taxes in accordance with law and make our nation proud, so as to reach the constitutional goal of social justice and eliminate inequalities in the society, the judge said.

The Court proceeded to direct Vijay to pay the 20% entry tax as demanded by the authorities within two weeks from the receipt of a copy of the Court's order.

The petition was moved by the actor in 2012. Vijay had submitted that he has already paid applicable import duty for the Rolls Royce to the Customs Department. However Assistant Commissioner (CT), Assessment Circle, Chennai, informed him the entry tax too has to be paid.

Also Read: Actor Joseph Vijay Questioned By Income Tax Dept In Connection With Tax Evasion Case

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