Activity of Arranging Press Conferences, Press Release, Interviews etc. for Clients not amount to Event Management Service: CESTAT

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In the case of, Customs, Excise, and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal (CESTAT) has ruled that activity of arranging press conferences, press release, interviews etc for clients would not amount to event management service and the same not covered service tax under the said category.

The Assessee, M/s Perfect Realtions Ltd, engaged in the activity of arranging press conferences, press release, interviews etc. for its commercial clients.

During the assessment period the excise authority held that the Assessee was liable to pay service tax on the services provided by the company to its commercial clients by holding that activity carried by the Assessee will come under the category of Events Management Services under section 65 (40) and under Business Auxiliary Services defined under Section 65 (105) of the Finance Act 1994 respectively.

On appeal the Commissioner (Appeals) has dropped the demand of service tax by holding the fact that the services provided by the Assessee comes under the category ‘Public Relation Services’ and it is admitted by the Assessee itself also. Thereafter, the Revenue approached the Tribunal on appeal against the order passed by the authority.

After analyzing the above-narrated facts and circumstances of the present issue, the Tribunal consists of President Justice (Dr) Satish Chandra and Technical Member V. Padmanabhan observed that “there is no dispute that the activities of the appellant are squarely covered within the definition of ‘Public Relation Services’ and the same will be taxable under that head”.

While dismissing the appeal filed by revenue, the bench further held that “the activity of the respondent does not fall within the categories of Event Management Service as well as Business Auxiliary Service and there is no justification in the argument of Revenue”.

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