Scrabble is a game, not a puzzle, says Supreme Court

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An intriguing issue recently arose before the Supreme Court in Pleasantime Products and Anr v Commissioner of Central Excise, Mumbai as to whether the product Scrabble is classifiable as a puzzle or as a game under the First Schedule to the Central Excise and Tariff Act, 1985 (CETA).

ScrabbleIn 2001 Pleasantime was served with a show cause notice issued by the commissioner, alleging that Scrabble was a game rather than a puzzle or toy. The notice stated that, as Scrabble is a product that contains a board and pieces, it falls under sub-heading 9504.90 of the CETA and so is liable for levy of central excise duty.

However, according to Pleasantime, Scrabble is either a puzzle or an educational toy, falling under sub-heading 9503.00 of the CETA.

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The update of court judgments is compiled by Bhasin & Co, Advocates, a corporate law firm based in New Delhi. The authors can be contacted at lbhasin@bhasinco.in or lbhasin@gmail.com. Readers should not act on the basis of this information without seeking professional legal advice.

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