10 June 2024


Customs, Excise and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal

Adani Enterprises Limited Vs. Commissioner of Central Excise & ST, Ahmedabad



Service Tax

Refund claim cannot be rejected merely because service provider has not mentioned registration number in invoices

The brief facts of the case are that, the Appellant is a merchant exporters engaged in the business of export of goods. The Appellant originally filed refund claim in terms of Notification No. 41/2007-ST dated 6th October, 2007 as amended from time to time of service tax for the services used in export of goods. The said refund claim was filed on account of services received for export of goods for the quarter Jan 2008 to March 2008. The Assistant Commissioner of service tax vide order-in-original sanctioned refund claim of Rs. 1,17,003 and rejected for the balance amount. The learned Commissioner (Appeals) in order-in-appeal remanded the matter to the adjudicating authority for deciding the case on merit. Being aggrieved by the impugned order, the Appellant filed the present appeal.

Refund claim cannot be rejected merely because the service provider has not mentioned registration number in their invoices. Moreover, there is no dispute raised by the Revenue on the facts that goods have been exported, service was used for export of goods and the value of service including service tax was paid to the service provider. In these undisputed facts, merely because registration was not mentioned in the invoices, it does not mean that Appellant has not used the said services for export of goods. Therefore, rejection of refund is not sustainable.

Regarding the issue of time-bar in filing the refund claim, present Tribunal find that, there is no dispute that even though refund is for the quarter October 2007 to December 2007 but the same was filed within six months i.e. on 29th May, 2008 from the end of the quarter. The adjudicating authority adjudicated the show cause notice in 31st March, 2009 and by which time the period of 60 days was extended to six months. Therefore, the extended period upto six months should have been considered. Accordingly, refund was well within time period of six months and hence, does not hit by limitation.

As regards the refund claim in respect of service of storage and warehousing service, the same was rejected on the premise that there is no co-relation of export with the documents of service provider of storage and warehousing. It is the submission of the Appellant that storage/warehousing was taken by the Appellant on monthly rent basis. When monthly rent was paid, the same cannot be correlated with individual export goods stored/warehoused in such place. There is no dispute that the entire storage areas were exclusively used for export of goods. It is not the case of the revenue that such storages and warehouses are also used for other than export goods. Therefore, said service was used for export of goods only. In view of above decision, coupled with the fact that storage and warehousing premises were exclusively used for export of goods, refund claim cannot be rejected on the issue of correlation particularly in the facts of the present case.

Learned Commissioner (Appeals) upheld the rejection of the refund claim also on the premise that Lorry Receipts issued by the transporters did not mention name of the appellant. Appellant are merchant exporter, the goods manufactured and cleared by Mafatlal Industries Limited. Since the goods were transported directly from their factory to the Port, though all the related documents were in the name of the Appellant, the Lorry receipt does not bear the name of Appellant is due to inadvertent mistake on the part of the transporters. The transportation of goods gets clearly correlated with other documents which bear the name of the Appellant. The appellant also obtained certificates from the transporters. With ample evidences, merely that the name of the Appellant is not appearing on the Lorry Receipts, cannot be the reason to reject the refund. The appeal is allowed with consequential relief.

Tags : Refund Denial Legality

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