The pendency of appeal cases related to indirect taxes in the Supreme Court, High Court and CESTAT has reduced 61 percent to 1.05 lakh in almost 2 years, Parliament was informed on Tuesday. Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur in a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha said the total pendency of appeals at the Supreme Court, High Court and CESTAT (Customs Excise and Service Tax Appellate Tribunal) as on June 30, 2017, was 2,73,591, whereas the same has significantly come down to 1,05,756 as on March 31, 2019, a reduction of 61 percent. With regard to direct taxes, as many as 3.41 lakh cases were pending before Commissioner (appeal), while 92,205 cases were pending before the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT) as on March 31, 2019. Besides, 43,224 and 6,188 direct taxes-related cases were pending before the High Court and Supreme Court as on December 31, 2018, respectively.
Thakur further said the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has raised the monetary limits for filing appeals before appellate tribunal and courts. Appeals would be filed before ITAT, high courts and Supreme Court only where tax effect is to the tune of Rs 20 lakh, Rs 50 lakh and Rs 1 crore, respectively. “In a large number of cases involving same issues, a request has been made to the Supreme Court for bunching the cases and for early fixation of the cases on priority,” Thakur said. In a separate reply, Thakur said provisional direct tax collection in the financial year 2018-19 was Rs 11.37 lakh crore, higher than Rs 10.02 lakh crore collected in 2017-18 and Rs 8.49 lakh crore in 2016-17 The provisional indirect tax collection (which includes central GST, integrated GST, compensation cess, customs, excise and service tax) in 2018-19 was Rs 9.37 lakh crore, higher than Rs 9.11 lakh crore collected in 2017-18. Goods and services tax (GST) was rolled out on July 1, 2017. In 2016-17, indirect tax collection had stood at Rs 8.61 lakh crore.