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Tvl. Rising International Co., Rep. by Its Proprietor, B. Kailashkumar v/s Commissioner of Central GST & Central Excise, Bibikulam & Others


Company & Directors' Information:- K N INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U45201UP2002PLC026841

Company & Directors' Information:- D B H INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1950PTC057209

Company & Directors' Information:- V AND S INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Active] CIN = U74899DL1992PTC049964

Company & Directors' Information:- S S A INTERNATIONAL LTD [Active] CIN = U15122DL1995PLC068186

Company & Directors' Information:- A T N INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = L65993WB1983PLC080793

Company & Directors' Information:- D D INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51909PB1995PTC016929

Company & Directors' Information:- T K INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U55101OR1982PLC001092

Company & Directors' Information:- N R INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = L74999WB1991PLC051738

Company & Directors' Information:- K J INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = L15142PB1993PLC011274

Company & Directors' Information:- A K S INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1996PLC076327

Company & Directors' Information:- S P INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U70100WB1994PTC063228

Company & Directors' Information:- B. K. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74999DL2006PTC157013

Company & Directors' Information:- R S C INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = L17124RJ1993PLC007136

Company & Directors' Information:- J C INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51109WB1999PLC089037

Company & Directors' Information:- M T L INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Amalgamated] CIN = U24219UP2001PTC025965

Company & Directors' Information:- T C N S INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Amalgamated] CIN = U51311DL1996PTC080096

Company & Directors' Information:- K V S INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U18101DL2003PTC120770

Company & Directors' Information:- G N INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51909DL2001PTC110766

Company & Directors' Information:- S H A M INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U45200MH1994PTC079867

Company & Directors' Information:- M K INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51909DL1996PLC083430

Company & Directors' Information:- V. G. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51101DL2007PTC162540

Company & Directors' Information:- D R INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U24132DL1996PTC079867

Company & Directors' Information:- R H INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U72900DL2007PLC159452

Company & Directors' Information:- G & G INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U17120DL2012PTC234047

Company & Directors' Information:- A & D INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U36109RJ2007PTC024176

Company & Directors' Information:- H G E INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U19115UP2011PTC045112

Company & Directors' Information:- K A I INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U13100OR2007PTC009647

Company & Directors' Information:- C G INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U99999MH1996PTC097577

Company & Directors' Information:- K C INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1994PLC060402

Company & Directors' Information:- M P INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U29130MH1997PTC107943

Company & Directors' Information:- A S INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74899DL1993PLC056158

Company & Directors' Information:- H C S INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U15312PB2012PTC036219

Company & Directors' Information:- L N G INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51909DL1993PLC053438

Company & Directors' Information:- S. D. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74900UP2008PTC036047

Company & Directors' Information:- S AND I INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51909DL1995PTC072210

Company & Directors' Information:- L T INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1999PLC097892

Company & Directors' Information:- A. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51102GJ2008PTC053840

Company & Directors' Information:- S J M INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U52110DL1987PLC028571

Company & Directors' Information:- S B S INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U18101DL1997PTC085878

Company & Directors' Information:- R. A. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51225DL2008PTC177405

Company & Directors' Information:- B G INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U50300PB2014PTC038889

Company & Directors' Information:- S F INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74999PB2000PTC023654

Company & Directors' Information:- R T S INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U63022DL1997PTC089328

Company & Directors' Information:- I K INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1995PTC066267

Company & Directors' Information:- C K INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1991PTC045625

Company & Directors' Information:- L A INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51909PB2010PTC033683

Company & Directors' Information:- H R V INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Amalgamated] CIN = U74899UP1993PTC057665

Company & Directors' Information:- K P INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U24110GJ2007PTC050026

Company & Directors' Information:- V S INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U85100MH1997PTC109647

Company & Directors' Information:- N N INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U01111DL1999PTC099094

Company & Directors' Information:- S R V INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74140DL2012PTC243060

Company & Directors' Information:- V. S. Y. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74999UP2008PTC035521

Company & Directors' Information:- U M I INTERNATIONAL LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U51909WB1990PLC049671

Company & Directors' Information:- A. R. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51900MH2010PTC228539

Company & Directors' Information:- B R INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1993PTC055562

Company & Directors' Information:- M J INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Amalgamated] CIN = U74899DL1982PTC013231

Company & Directors' Information:- D N INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U36911TN1996PLC034205

Company & Directors' Information:- M. H. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U70102DL2007PTC164267

Company & Directors' Information:- H AND Z INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U10102AS1995PLC004509

Company & Directors' Information:- M G M INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Active] CIN = U74899DL1982PTC013580

Company & Directors' Information:- J J INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51109DL1992PTC047657

Company & Directors' Information:- H D INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1994PLC060720

Company & Directors' Information:- K. A. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51101UP2012PTC049338

Company & Directors' Information:- J & G INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U18109DL2012PTC238392

Company & Directors' Information:- K R INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U17291DL2008PTC172188

Company & Directors' Information:- D. J. INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U65910MH1999PLC119298

Company & Directors' Information:- S P INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U99999UP1965PTC003091

Company & Directors' Information:- J M INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Active] CIN = U45201WB1991PTC050829

Company & Directors' Information:- D P C INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Active] CIN = U74210WB1984PTC037378

Company & Directors' Information:- B M INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1992PTC048736

Company & Directors' Information:- S G INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U51109WB1998PTC086547

Company & Directors' Information:- B N INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U15412WB1999PTC089316

Company & Directors' Information:- V A INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U01111DL2000PTC104712

Company & Directors' Information:- S. J. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U27310DL2007PTC169438

Company & Directors' Information:- N H B INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Converted to LLP] CIN = U67190MH1997PTC107387

Company & Directors' Information:- P D K INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Active] CIN = U74140WB1992PTC056468

Company & Directors' Information:- G. S. C. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U29120MH1994PTC080380

Company & Directors' Information:- A J INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Converted to LLP] CIN = U74899DL1994PTC060818

Company & Directors' Information:- J S M INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U85110KA1996PLC020046

Company & Directors' Information:- M K N INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51909DL2002PTC117207

Company & Directors' Information:- N M INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74120MH2012PTC234492

Company & Directors' Information:- S S M INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51909DL1997PTC089876

Company & Directors' Information:- A P J INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U51909HR2010PTC040304

Company & Directors' Information:- T. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U72900DL1997PTC091049

Company & Directors' Information:- V R INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51101UP2011PTC043952

Company & Directors' Information:- A & F INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U00265KA1995PTC018998

Company & Directors' Information:- M E C INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U33111GJ1963PTC082423

Company & Directors' Information:- J K INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U01100MH2004PTC144492

Company & Directors' Information:- D. S. R. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74999UP2010PTC039954

Company & Directors' Information:- B L S INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74900UR2010PTC033210

Company & Directors' Information:- R B INTERNATIONAL LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U18101WB1993PLC059515

Company & Directors' Information:- P Y INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Converted to LLP] CIN = U51102RJ1995PTC010133

Company & Directors' Information:- R C INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U51909TG1991PLC012477

Company & Directors' Information:- N J INDIA INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U70101UP2004PLC028722

Company & Directors' Information:- I AND A INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U72200TG1995PTC019936

Company & Directors' Information:- P V INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1998PTC094598

Company & Directors' Information:- I B INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Under Process of Striking Off] CIN = U72200DL2000PTC105735

Company & Directors' Information:- A M INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74899DL1995PTC066228

Company & Directors' Information:- K K M INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U17110MH1995PTC089836

Company & Directors' Information:- Z. H. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U21098MH2010PTC210735

Company & Directors' Information:- J R INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51909TN2002PTC048744

Company & Directors' Information:- H P AND B G INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U50500DL1999PTC100851

Company & Directors' Information:- L S INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74999DL2009PTC193390

Company & Directors' Information:- M B INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U52190DL2001PTC110572

Company & Directors' Information:- O K R INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74900DL1996PTC077152

Company & Directors' Information:- B B C INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U25209WB1984PTC037383

Company & Directors' Information:- K S INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U51909MH2001PTC134345

Company & Directors' Information:- A TO Z INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U51101TN1992PTC022507

Company & Directors' Information:- C & A INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U51900MH1982PTC026718

Company & Directors' Information:- J S INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U51900MH1982PTC027604

Company & Directors' Information:- A C INDIA INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74899DL1989PTC034784

Company & Directors' Information:- S. S. N. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U29306DL1981PTC012616

Company & Directors' Information:- INDIA INTERNATIONAL COMPANY PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U51228MH1955PTC009483

Company & Directors' Information:- A H INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U55101RJ2021PTC073171

Company & Directors' Information:- R K INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U63040PB1982PTC004926

Company & Directors' Information:- GST PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U27104MH2002PTC136410

Company & Directors' Information:- L & P INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U52100DL2016PTC292025

Company & Directors' Information:- J D K INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Active] CIN = U74899DL1982PTC014087

Company & Directors' Information:- R B N INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U52300DL2012PTC243998

Company & Directors' Information:- P AND P INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED. [Strike Off] CIN = U24100OR1993PTC003244

Company & Directors' Information:- B P INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U31909HP1984PTC005785

Company & Directors' Information:- E C INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U99999DL1982PTC013146

Company & Directors' Information:- R A R E INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U31900DL2005PTC134395

Company & Directors' Information:- D I D INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Converted to LLP] CIN = U28112MH2014PTC258750

Company & Directors' Information:- S R A INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U99999DL1980PTC010389

Company & Directors' Information:- R Z INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74900KA2012PTC064445

Company & Directors' Information:- M M INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Converted to LLP] CIN = U51312DL1977PTC008583

Company & Directors' Information:- A K INDIA INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U45201DL1981PTC012389

Company & Directors' Information:- O P INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U55101PB2013PTC037499

Company & Directors' Information:- J & A INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U51900PB2013PTC037302

Company & Directors' Information:- A P M INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74900TN2014PTC095953

Company & Directors' Information:- Y. A. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74900RJ2012PTC040431

Company & Directors' Information:- D & A INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74999MH2015PTC262713

Company & Directors' Information:- R L INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U18204UP2016PTC076344

Company & Directors' Information:- V P S INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U93030UP2014PTC066242

Company & Directors' Information:- INDIA RISING PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74140DL2012PTC241616

Company & Directors' Information:- J V INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U51102DL2012PTC240197

Company & Directors' Information:- R I K INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Under Process of Striking Off] CIN = U52590DL2015PTC283801

Company & Directors' Information:- Y & H INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U63000DL2014PTC266649

Company & Directors' Information:- S R L INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE LIMITED [Under Process of Striking Off] CIN = U20296AP2013PTC085533

Company & Directors' Information:- E-RISING (INDIA) PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U31909DL2019FTC353304

Company & Directors' Information:- M D INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Active] CIN = U74140MH1981PTC025007

Company & Directors' Information:- INTERNATIONAL CO PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U51109UR1935PTC000663

Company & Directors' Information:- A B C INTERNATIONAL PVT LTD [Strike Off] CIN = U99999DL1990PTC041062

Company & Directors' Information:- D C M INTERNATIONAL LTD. [Strike Off] CIN = U99999DL2000PTC004208

Company & Directors' Information:- B C I INTERNATIONAL LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74900DL1977PLC008468

    W.P.(MD). No. 12152 of 2020 & W.M.P.(MD). No. 10459 of 2020

    Decided On, 06 October 2020

    At, Before the Madurai Bench of Madras High Court

    By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE G.R. SWAMINATHAN

    For the Petitioner: B. Rooban, Advocate. For the Respondents: B. Vijaya Karthikeyan, Advocate.



Judgment Text

(Prayer: Writ Petition filed under Article 226 of the Constitution of India for issuance of Writ of Certiorari, to call for the records pertaining to the impugned Order of seizure in GST INS-02 and consecutive Order of Prohibition in GST INS-03 both, dated 21.8.2020 passed by the Third Respondent and quash the same.)1. M/s. Rising International Company (legal name, Kailashkumar), Madurai, the Petitioner herein, is a dealer registered under the Goods and Services Tax Act. It imports toys from China. It also purchases Goods from Delhi-based dealers. The dealer's specific stand is that returns till the month of March, 2020 have been filed and there are no arrears. On account of the lock down restrictions issued in the wake of Covid-19 pandemic, the business was shut down since April 2020. Following the partial lifting of restrictions, the Petitioner reopened the business. While so, on 21.8.2020, the Superintendent (HPU), CGST and Central Excise, Madurai inspected and conducted search of the Petitioner's place of business. After completion of the search operation, mahazar was also drawn. It was followed by an order of seizure. All the Goods set out in the mahazar together with a number of documents were seized. The inspecting official on scrutiny of the books, registers and Goods found during the inspection, opined that he has reasons to believe that the Goods are liable to confiscation. Hence, the order of prohibition was issued directing the dealer not to remove or part with or otherwise deal with the seized Goods. These orders of seizure and prohibition issued on 21.8.2020 by the Third Respondent are put to challenge in this Writ Petition.2. The primary contention of the Petitioner is that there was absolutely no reason to believe that the Petitioner had indulged in suppression or otherwise contravened any of the provisions of the Act. The Respondents had conducted the search without any reasonable basis. It was a fishing Enquiry. According to the Petitioner, mere non-maintenance of the stock register in the place of business cannot be a ground to order seizure of the Goods. The Petitioner is ready to fully account the stock position. He also submitted that the Petitioner has been prompt in remitting the customs duty. The Petitioner has not at all come under adverse notice. The Petitioner's Counsel placed reliance on the decision of the Hon'ble Supreme Court in Income Tax Officer, Calcutta and others v. Lakhmani Mewal Das, AIR 1976 SC 1753. More than anything else, the impugned action will have calamitous consequences on the Petitioner's business which had just restarted after remaining shut down for months due to Covid-19 outbreak.3. This Writ Petition was listed for admission on 21.9.2020. At the admission stage itself, the learned Standing Counsel took notice for the Respondents. The matter was ordered to be called on 30.9.2020. It was taken up for disposal on 30.9.2020. Acceding to the request for adjournment made by the Respondents, the case was taken up for hearing on 1.10.2020. With the consent of the learned Counsel on either side, the matter was heard finally.4. The Respondents have offered their Para wise comments on the allegations made by the Petitioner. The learned Standing Counsel for the Respondent contended that the Respondents received intelligence inputs that the Petitioner has been evading Goods and service tax by misdeclaring the China's origin plastic toys as non electric toys and paying 12% IGST on the imported Goods in place of 18% IGST leviable on such imported Chinese electric toys. However, the intelligence also indicated that the Goods are sold in Indian market by charging 12% IGST in place of 18% IGST thereby evading GST and causing revenue loss to the exchequer. It is stated that the search operation was conducted with proper authorisation granted under Section 67(2) of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017. The search conducted on the business premises of the Petitioner on 21.8.2020 showed that huge quantity of the Chinese origin toys stocked in the Petitioner's premises were found unaccounted.5. The Respondents deny the claim of the Petitioner that he produced all the documents and soft copies of sales invoices for the previous assessment years. The Respondents reiterated that on 21.8.2020, the Petitioner was not able to produce true and correct account of stock of Goods. The learned Standing Counsel drew my attention to the answers given by the Petitioner in respect of the questions recorded on 31.8.2020 under Section 70 of the Act. He asserted that the Petitioner was unable to submit any Physical or soft copy of the stock details and sales details. According to the Respondents, the Petitioner was not maintaining any record relating to the current stock position of the Goods. The actual stock position was physically taken and arrived at by the inspecting officials during the search proceedings on 21.8.2020.6. The learned Standing Counsel would point out that as per Section 35 (1) of the Act read with Rule 56 of the Rules, the registered dealer is obliged to maintain true and correct account of stock of Goods at his principal place of business. If he fails to account, consequences will follow. The learned Standing Counsel would state that the adjudication proceedings will now commence and therefore, the validity of the seizure cannot be challenged. The Petitioner's rights will have to abide by the outcome of the adjudication proceedings. His core argument is that this Court cannot sit in Appeal over the reasonable belief of the proper Officer for ordering search. The learned Standing Counsel placing reliance on the State of Gujarat v. Shri Mohanlal Jitamalji Porwal and another, 1987 (20) E.L.T 483 (SC), Indru Ramchand Bharvani v. Union of India, 1992 (59) E.L.T 201 (SC), and Bhagawan R. Daswani v. Collector of Central Excise, Coimbatore, 2004 (168) E.L.T 298 (Mad.) submitted that the Writ Petition has been prematurely filed and called upon this Court to dismiss the Writ Petition.7. I carefully considered the rival contentions and went through the materials on record. Lord Atkin in his celebrated dissent in Liversidge v. Anderson, 1942 AC 206, proclaimed that laws speak the same language in war as in peace and that the words have only one meaning. I bow in reverential agreement. Likewise, laws speak the same language during normal as well as in pandemic times. But, contemporary imperatives demand that Courts, whenever possible, ought to adopt that approach which will kick-start the economy. Salaried classes may not be bearing the brunt. The position of the farmer, manufacturer and the trader is different. This Court is mindful of the Pain and Suffering experienced by them.8. Section 67(1) & (2) of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 read as follows:"67.Power of inspection, search and seizure.-(1) Where the proper officer, not below the rank of Joint Commissioner, has reasons to believe that-(a) a taxable person has suppressed any transaction relating to supply of Goods or services or both or the stock of Goods in hand, or has claimed input tax credit in excess of his entitlement under this Act or has indulged in contravention of any of the provisions of this Act or the rules made thereunder to evade tax under this Act; or(b) any person engaged in the business of transporting Goods or an Owner or operator of a warehouse or a godown or any other place is keeping Goods, which have escaped payment of tax or has kept his accounts or Goods in such a manner as is likely to cause evasion of tax payable under this Act, he may authorise in writing any other Officer of central tax to inspect any places of business of the taxable person or the persons engaged in the business of transporting Goods or the Owner or the operator of warehouse or godown or any other place.(2) Where the proper Officer, not below the rank of Joint Commissioner, either pursuant to an inspection carried out under sub-section (1) or otherwise, has reasons to believe that any Goods liable to confiscation or any documents or books or things, which in his opinion shall be useful for or relevant to any proceedings under this Act, are secreted in any place, he may authorise in writing any other Officer of central tax to search and seize or may himself search and seize such Goods, documents or books or things:Provided that where it is not practicable to seize any such Goods, the proper Officer, or any Officer authorised by him, may serve on the Owner or the custodian of the Goods an order that he shall not remove, part with, or otherwise deal with the Goods except with the previous permission of such Officer:Provided further that the documents or books or things so seized shall be retained by such Officer only for so long as may be necessary for their examination and for any inquiry or proceedings under this Act.“Section 67(1) of the Act employs the expression”has reason to believe“. The Hon'ble Supreme Court in Income Tax Officer, Calcutta and others v. Lakhmani Mewal Das, 1976 (3) SCC 757 held that the existence of the belief can be challenged by the assessee but not the sufficiency of reasons for the belief. The expression”reason to believe“does not mean a purely subjective satisfaction on the part of the Officer. It must be held in good faith. It cannot be merely a pretence. It is open to the Court to examine whether the reasons for the formation of the belief have a rational connection with or a relevant bearing on the formation of the belief and are not extraneous or irrelevant for the purpose of the section. To this limited extent, the action of the authority in initiating proceedings is open to challenge. Of course, as contended by the learned Standing Counsel for the Respondents this Judgment was rendered in the context of Income Tax Act as regards the reopening of the assessment where income escaped assessment. But then, the same principles will govern the case on hand also. It is true that this Court cannot sit in appeal over the satisfaction of the proper Officer. It is equally true as observed in Bhagwan R. Daswani v. Collector of Central Excise, Coimbatore, 2004 (168) E.L.T 298 (Mad), that whether the Officer had materials to arrive at a reasonable belief or not before the search was conducted need not be tested under legal microscope.”9. In the case on hand, bare assertion has been made that the impugned proceedings were initiated based on the intelligence developed by CGST (HPU), Madurai that the Petitioner is evading GST by misdeclaring the Goods while importing. But not a scrap of material was produced before the Court. The recitals set out in the order of seizure and the order of prohibition indicate that the formation of the requisite belief is predicated on the scrutiny of the books of account, registers and documents found during the search. This is sufficient to invalidate the entire proceedings. But I refrain from doing so. Now that the search has been conducted and it has been shown that the stock register was not maintained at the Petitioner's place of business, I do not want to quash the order of seizure. However, the order of prohibition has to be necessarily interfered with. The search and seizure had taken place on 21.8.2020. By now, more than 40 days have elapsed. Even, a Show Cause Notice has not been issued till date. The Respondents have made a cool statement in their Para wise comments that no allegation has been made against the Petitioner on the matter under investigation merely by issuing orders of seizure and prohibition and that the matter would be decided by proper Officer under CGST Act only after completion of the investigation of the case.10. The Respondents may not be in a hurry. They can afford to wait. Officials who get their salaries in the first week of every month may not be conscious of the cost of delays in such cases. Adjudication proceedings may go on for months. That is why, the Statute provides for provisional release of the detained Goods. Section 67(6) of the Act reads as follows:“The Goods so seized under sub-section (2) shall be released, on a provisional basis, upon execution of a bond and furnishing of a security, in such manner and of such quantum, respectively, as may be prescribed or on payment of applicable tax, interest and penalty payable, as the case may be.”11. I am of the view that the Respondents ought to release the Goods on provisional basis. The Respondents are directed to take personal bond from the Petitioner. I wanted to know if the Petitioner can offer any security. It appears that the two immovable properties of the Petitioner are already under Mortgage. The Petitioner states that at best he can deposit a sum of Rs.2.00 lakhs. It is not as if the Petitioner is going to run away. He has roots in

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Madurai. Unless the Petitioner is permitted to deal with the Goods in question, even if some levy is imposed on the Petitioner in future, he will not be able to pay the same. Common sense dictates that the Petitioner is allowed to do business. The Respondents are directed to release the Goods on taking personal bond from him and on payment of a sum of Rs.2.00 lakhs. Even while the order of seizure is sustained, the order of prohibition is modified in the above terms. Of course, the Respondents are at liberty to conduct adjudication proceedings against the Petitioner if he is unable to account for the stock position. The observations made in this order will not have any bearing on the said proceedings.12. I am done with this case. But I cannot help mumbling to myself that the general market is flooded with Chinese Goods. The public must make a conscious choice to encourage swadeshi products. Last Sunday, I went out to buy a mobile phone. I could not come across a single Indian brand. It is no use telling the public not to buy Chinese items. The Indian entrepreneur must rise to the occasion. He must ask himself as to why the Chinese products are preferred and he must come out with alternatives. There must be no compromise in quality. At the same time, the price factor should also be borne in mind.13. The Writ Petition is partly allowed. No Costs. Consequently, connected Miscellaneous Petition is closed.
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