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Commissioner of Central Excise, Customs and Service Tax, Belgaum Vs. Zeenath Transport Company - (Customs, Excise and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal) (07 Jun 2017)

Assessee is eligible for benefit under Section 80 of Finance Act, 1994, where service tax along with interest is paid before issue of show-cause notice


Service Tax

Present appeal has been filed by Revenue against impugned order passed by Commissioner whereby Commissioner has dropped penalty under Section 76, 77 and 78 of Finance Act, 1994, as Assessee has paid service tax liability along with interest. Respondent paid service tax and interest and same was appropriated by Commissioner. Further, Commissioner, relying upon Boards Circular No. 341/18/2004 : MANU/DSTX/0049/2004 dated 17th December, 2004, waived penalties invoking Section 80 of Finance Act, 1994.

Instruction in Boards Circular No. 341/18/2004 : MANU/DSTX/0049/2004 dated 17th December, 2004 provides that, in case of omission in payment of service tax or procedural lapses by persons liable to pay service tax on goods transport by road, committed before 31st December 2005, consequences should be limited to recovery of tax with interest payable thereon. No penalty should be imposed on such defaulters unless default is on account of deliberate fraud, collusion, suppression of facts or willful mis-statement or contraventions of provisions of service tax with intent to evade payment of service tax.

Commissioner in facts and circumstances of case has rightly given benefit of Section 80 of Act, and has not imposed penalties under Section 76, 77 & 78 of Act, because Respondent had paid service tax along with interest before issue of show-cause notice. Further, levy was newly introduced during relevant period involved in present case and even Department was not aware of statutory provisions and hence, department has demanded entire amount in show-cause notice without giving benefit of abatement as provided under Notification No. 32/2004-ST : MANU/DSTX/0046/2004 dated 3.12.2004.

Further, Division Bench of this Tribunal in case of S-Mac Security Services Pvt. Ltd. by relying upon decision of Karnataka High Court in case of Motor World has upheld benefit under Section 80 where service tax along with interest is paid before issue of show-cause notice. Therefore, there is no infirmity in impugned order and same is upheld by dismissing appeal of Revenue.

Relevant : S-Mac Security Services Pvt. Ltd. vs. CST : MANU/CB/0076/2016: 2016 (45) STR 209 (Tri.-Bang.), CST, Bangalore vs. Motor World: MANU/KA/2705/2011


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