In the said case, the respondent was a publisher of books but did not have a printing press. He would procure manuscripts, hit upon a suitable format, get it printed from third parties under his supervision, get the book bound and put it out for sale. The Calcutta High Court dismissed the appeal of the Revenue and held in favour of the assessee therein that he was engaged in manufacturing and also processing of books, which were goods. The activity undertaken by the petitioner herein, as accepted in the original assessment order, is that the petitioner had printed text books and bound them and as per the instructions of the importer dispatched them to parties outside India or within India. The petitioner has set up an undertaking for printing and production of books.
Section 10B applies to 100% export oriented undertaking engaged in export of articles, things or computer software for a period of ten consecutive assessment years beginning from the year in which the undertaking begins to manufacture or produce articles, things or computer software. The words “articles”and “things”are wide and by no stretch it can be said that the petitioner does not produce an article or a thing. After receipt of manuscripts from abroad, the petitioner has to do type setting, make/process/print on paper and then bind printed pages into books. Thus, a new product, distinct and separate from the bare manuscripts takes shape and gets a physical shape in form of books. Books are an article or a thing and the process involved is certainly production, if not manufacture.