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March 3, 2023

Owing to the Appellate Tribunal’s unconstitutionality, the appeal filing deadline will be handled in accordance with Circular No. 132/2/2020-GST

by CA Shivam Jaiswal in GST, GST Circular Notification

Owing to the Appellate Tribunal’s unconstitutionality, the appeal filing deadline will be handled in accordance with Circular No. 132/2/2020-GST

Fact and Issue of the case

The common position in these Petitions is that Petitioners have challenged the order passed in appeal by Appellate authority under Central Goods and Services Act, 2017.

The Central Goods and Services Act provides a mechanism for appeals. Chapter XVIII deals with Appeals and Review. The order passed under the Act is appealable to the appellate authority under Section 107 of the Act. Section 112 of the Act provides an appeal thereafter to Appellate Tribunal.

These Writ Petitions under Article 226 of the Constitution of India are filed on the ground that the Appellate Tribunal is not yet constituted. Since various such Petitions are being filed in this Court and taking note of the large pendency of such cases, we had directed the Respondents to file a reply affidavit as to the position brought about by non-constitution of the Appellate Tribunal.

The Chairman of the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (the “Board”) has filed an affidavit in Writ Petition no. 10883 of 2019 on 12 October 2022

Observation of the court

Therefore, what emerges from the Circular and Affidavit filed by the Chairman of the Board is that the appeal to the Appellate Tribunal can be filed within three months (six months in the case of Appeals by the Government) from the date of the communication of the order or date on which the President or State President, as the case may be, of the Appellate Tribunal enters office, whichever is later.

As of date, we do not have any positive statement from the respondents to the exact time or date on which the contingency provided in Clause 4.2, that is, President or State President entering office, would occur.

The question is whether the Petitions need to be kept pending in this Court. In most of the Petitions filed on the ground that the Tribunal is unavailable, this Court has granted interim protection.

The Chairman of the Board, in the affidavit, has indicated that no hardship would be caused to the taxpayers because of the non-constitution of the Tribunal. Reading the affidavit along with Circular, it is clear that the Government does not intend that taxpayers are prejudiced for want of the Tribunal. With that intent, the period of limitation has been extended. As a corollary of the intention expressed in the affidavit and the Circular, it follows that the appealable orders (to the Tribunal) would not be implemented till the Tribunal becomes functional. That being the position, the writ petitions do not need to remain pending in this Court. Some time after the tribunal becomes functional as above can be given.

It would be advisable, to avoid further complications, that the Respondent-Board issues instructions to incorporate Clause 4.2 of the Circular dated 18 March 2020 in each order which is appealable to the Appellate Tribunal constituted under Section 109 of the Act. This would guide the aggrieved parties as to the future course of conduct and reduce needless litigation in the form of filing writ petitions such as the present ones. The Learned ASG states that this option would be considered


In the result, appeal of the assessee is allowed and ruled in favour of the assessee

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