The Calcutta High Court has restrained the parallel GST proceedings by 3 wings of the same department for the same tax period.
The writ petition was filed to quash the notices issued by the concerned CGST and CX Headquarters, Anti Evasion, Kolkata North Commissionerate insofar as it relates to financial year 2017-2018 to 2019 – 2020 for which an audit under Section 65 of the CGST Act, 2017 has been conducted by the superintendent of concerned CGST and CX, Circle – II, Kolkata Audit – I Commissionerate.
The petitioner sought the directions to declare the scrutiny of returns under Section 61 of the CGST Act, 2017 cannot be done once an audit under Section 65 of the CGST Act, 2017 has been conducted by the department for the same tax period.
The division bench of Justice T.S. Sivagnanam and Justice Supratim Bhattacharya stated that three wings of the same department are proceeding against the appellants for the very same period, i.e. financial years 2017- 2018, 2018-2019 and 2019-2020. The first of the departments which had taken action was the Audit Commissionerate, which had issued notice under Section 65 of the CGST Act, 2017 dated 9th November, 2021. The appellants had furnished the details as called for in the said notice and also responded to the intimation dated 5th January, 2022 / 6th January, 2022 for conducting GST audit.
“Since the audit proceedings under Section 65 of the Act has already commenced, it is but appropriate that the proceedings should be taken to the logical end. The proceedings initiated by the Anti Evasion and Range Office for the very same period shall not be proceeded with any further,” the court observed.
The appeal along with the connected application were allowed and the order passed by the Single Bench was set aside.
The court directed Superintendent, CGST to issue show cause notice to the appellants within a period of six weeks from the date of receipt of the server copy of this judgement and order and afford a reasonable opportunity to the appellants to submit their reply along with documents. Thereafter, an opportunity of personal hearing be granted to the authorised representative of the appellants either in physical or in virtual mode. Subsequently, a speaking order will be passed on merits and in accordance with law within a period of three weeks from the date on which the personal hearing is concluded.
The court restrained the other officials from proceeding further against the appellants in respect of the very same period for which action has been initiated.
Case title: M/s. R. P. Buildcon Private Limited & Anr. v/s The Superintendent, CGST & CX, Circle – II, Group – 10 & ors.
Citation: M.A.T. No.1595 of 2022 With I.A. No.CAN 1 of 2022