Refund cannot be rejected on flimsy grounds as it defeats the very purpose of rebate schemes

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In M/s. Nupur Viniyog Private Limited v. Commissioner of CGST & CX, Kolkata South Commissionerate [Service Tax Appeal No.75701 of 2018 decided on July 9, 2021] M/s. Nupur Viniyog Private Limited (“the Appellant”) filed refund of Service Tax paid on the taxable specified services for export of goods made under Bills of Export.

Order-in-Original (“OIO”)- Sanctioned refund. Being aggrieved, Department filed appeal before Commissioner (Appeals).

Order-in-Appeal (“OIA”)– Allowed Department’s appeal on the ground that no Cross Objection was filed by the Appellant against the Department’s appeal and that the CA Certificate was not submitted by the Appellant. Being aggrieved, the Appellant preferred present appeal.

The Appellant contended that Cross Objection was filed on May 27, 2016 wherein it was mentioned that CA Certificated dated May 20, 2015 was filed along with refund application and same was reiterated in personal hearing dated November 22, 2017.

Hon’ble CESTAT, Kolkata– Noted that detailed OIO was passed and all the documents/ notifications/ conditions were discussed and refund was sanctioned. Further, stated that Commissioner (Appeals) could have asked for copy of cross objection and CA Certificate and the same cannot be the ground for rejection of refund.

Held that once it has been established that export had taken place and Service Tax was paid on export by the Appellant in terms of the relevant notification, refund must be granted.

Further, set aside the OIA and upheld OIO. Stated that substantive benefit should not be denied to the Appellant if conditions are fulfilled. Sole intention of the Government to bring out the rebate schemes is to promote the Indian exporters to enjoy a level playing field and to compete with the exporters of other countries in the global market; if the refund claims are rejected on such flimsy grounds, it defeats the very purpose of rebate schemes and traps the exporters under unnecessary litigations.

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