Writ Petition challenging levy of Service Tax not maintainable since alternative Statutory Remedy available: Madras HC
Madras High Court ruled that the writ petition challenging levy of Service Tax not maintainable since alternative Statutory Remedy available.
The petitioner, Mr.S.Subin Vinoth Kumar who is the Legal Representative of Mr.Suriyamurthy assailed the order of the respondent confirming the levy of service tax passed on a deceased person, which was sought to be quashed.
Ms.G.Varshitha, counsel appearing on behalf of the petitioner vehemently argued that the order impugned is perverse on the ground that it was passed against a dead person. The learned counsel reiterated that no statutory order can be passed against a dead person and therefore, the petitioner is constrained to move the present writ petition.
Mr.V.Sundareswaran, the Senior Panel Counsel appearing on behalf of the Department contended that the son of the deceased, Mr.S.Subin Vinoth Kumar, participated in the enquiry proceedings and submitted his objections/defence statements. Considering his objections on behalf of the company, the Commissioner of Central Excise, Puducherry issued the final order in proceedings. Thus, the contention that the order was passed against a dead person is incorrect, as the legal representative/son of the deceased participated in the enquiry proceedings and thereafter, the final order was passed by the Commissioner and a copy of the same was also communicated to the son of the deceased. This being the factum, the grounds raised in the writ petition deserve no merit for consideration.
The single bench of Justice S.M.Subramaniam ruled that that in respect of all other grounds, if at all, on merits, to be adjudicated before the appellate Tribunal by preferring an appeal under Section 86 of the Finance Act, 1994.
The court said, “the petitioner has to exhaust the statutory remedy provided under the Act and this Court, under Article 226 of the Constitution of India, cannot adjudicate disputed facts, which are all to be adjudicated with reference to the documents as well as the evidences to be produced before the competent authority and before the Appellate Tribunal. In the absence of establishing such facts with reference to the records, High Court cannot place appreciation on those facts now raised by the petitioner in the present writ petition.”
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