Madhya Pradesh High Court Affirms No Condonation of Delay in CGST Act Appeals

LI Network

Published on: 28 July 2023 at 21:52 IST

The Madhya Pradesh High Court recently clarified the time limit for filing appeals under the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 (CGST Act), stating that the Appellate Authority cannot entertain appeals filed beyond the original three-month period, with an additional one-month extension.

The Court emphasized that there is no provision for condonation of delay in the statute, thus strictly adhering to the provisions of Section 169(1) of the Act.

The Division Bench, comprising Justice Sheel Nagu and Justice Avanindra Kumar Singh, pointed out that nearly six years have passed since the CGST Act’s implementation on July 01, 2017.

The Court underscored that teething issues have been resolved, and Section 169(1) should be followed without any additional implications or interpretations beyond what is expressly provided.

Advocate Nitin Agrawal represented the Petitioner, while Government Advocate Ritwik Parashar appeared for the Respondent.

The petitioner, Gyan Cement House, did not dispute the availability of an alternative statutory remedy of appeal under Section 107 of the CGST Act.

However, they argued that they were recently made aware of the impugned order, and by that time, the prescribed appeal period had already lapsed. Thus, they approached the High Court seeking redress.

Upon examining the statutory provisions under Section 107 of the Act, the Bench concluded that the Appellate Authority cannot entertain an appeal filed beyond the original three-month period, along with the one-month extension.

In essence, the timeframe for filing the appeal is calculated from the day the decision or order appealed against is communicated to the aggrieved person.

Since there was a factual dispute regarding the date of communication of the impugned order to the petitioner, the High Court refrained from delving into the merits of the matter. Instead, the Court directed the petitioner to file an appeal before the Competent Authority.

The Authority, in turn, was instructed to examine the date of communication of the impugned order to determine whether the appeal was filed within the prescribed limitation period.

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