Service Tax not Leviable in Absence of Consignment Note, Services cannot be Considered as GTA Services: CESTAT [Read Order]

The New Delhi Bench of the Customs, Excise and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal (CESTAT) ruled that service tax not leviable in absence of consignment note and that services cannot be considered as GTA services. On the basis of third party data provided by the Income Tax Department, it was observed that the appellant received certain amount during the period 2012-13 on which TDS was deducted under Section 194C of the Income Tax Act. It further revealed that service of GTA was provided by the appellant to M/s BPCL as the appellant had provided the truck/tanker for supply of petroleum products and during the period 2012-13, the appellant received Rs. 13,67,340/- but did not pay the service tax thereon. Show cause notice was issued proposing recovery of service tax amount of Rs. 1,69,003/- under proviso to Section 73(1) and penalty under Section 77 and 78 of the Finance Act, 1994.

The adjudicating authority confirmed the demand and the appeal preferred by the appellant was rejected by the impugned order. Hence the present appeal has been filed by the appellant before this Tribunal. The sum and substance of the contention raised by the appellant is that the services are taxable in the hands of the service receiver under Notification No. 30/2012-ST dated 20.06.2012 and 3 ST/54963/2023 in terms thereof the service receiver, i.e. M/s BPCL has already discharged the service tax liability under RCM for which they have issued the certificate. The counsel also submitted that the appellant is owner of the truck which is used for transportation of diesel/petrol, they fall under the negative list and are exempted from levy of service tax.

The Tribunal of Binu Tamta, Judicial Member observed that “I find that the appellant apart from running the petrol pump outlet is also providing the transportation of petroleum pump on behalf of M/s BPCL, the service receiver and M/s BPCL has issued a certificate mentioning that service tax has been discharged by them on monthly basis being the person liable to pay tax on services received under Goods Transport Agency as per the provisions of the Finance Act. Therefore, the service tax liability has been discharged by the service receiver and consequently the appellant is not liable to discharge the same once again.”

“In the present case, I find that it is an undisputed position that the appellant had not issued any consignment notes by whatever name and hence in view of the law laid down by the series of decisions, no service tax liability can be imposed. I, therefore, hold that the demand proposed in the show cause notice for recovery of service tax of Rs. 1,69,003/- along with interest and penalty is liable to be dropped and the impugned order needs to be set aside” the Bench added.

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