The Delhi High Court ruled that unless Twin Conditions mentioned in Section 32 E of Central Excise Act, 1944 are fulfilled, the settlement commission cannot move further in Matter.
The writ petition is directed against the order and corrigendum, passed by the Customs, Central Excise & Service Tax Settlement Commission, Principal Bench, New Delhi.
Advocate Dhruv Surana, appearing the petitioners, submitted that the orders passed by the Settlement Commission are flawed in law, for the reason that the Settlement Commission has clearly observed in paragraph 95 of the order that the petitioners have not made full and true disclosure and have not cooperated in the proceedings conducted by it.
He contended that given the said observation, the Settlement Commission should have remitted the matter to the concerned statutory authority under the Central Excise Act, 1944 for adjudication in accordance with the law.
Advocate Aditya Singla, appearing for the respondents/revenue, cannot but accept the position that the issue raised in the appeal stands covered by the said judgment.
The division bench of Justice Rajiv Shakdher and Justice Tara Vitasta Ganju noted that in this case, the petitioners have got practically no benefit in approaching the Settlement Commission, as the quantum of liability which was indicated in the show cause notice(s) is practically what has been the thrust on them via impugned orders.
The bench observed that once the Settlement Commission comes to a conclusion that there has been no true and fair disclosure of facts and the manner in which the liability has been derived, the Settlement Commission, in our opinion, cannot then proceed to adjudicate the liability.
The court set aside the orders.
Case title: Suresh Kumar Verma & Ors. v/s Customs, Central Excise and Service Tax Settlement Commission & Ors.
Citation: W.P.(C) 4337/2018 & CM No.16837/2018