No Penalty if E-way bill expired for bonafide reason : High Court
Whether No Penalty if E-way bill expired for bonafide reason ?
The delay of almost few hours before which E-way Bill stood expired appears to be bonafide and without establishing fraudulent intent and negligence on the part of petitioner, the impugned notice/order could not have been passed.
Resultantly, the penalty imposed by the order is set aside.
High Court also refered the following paragraph of other High Court decision
”42. How the 2nd respondent could have drawn an inference that petitioner is evading tax merely because the E-way Bill has expired is also nowhere explained in the counter-affidavit. In our considered opinion, there was no material before the 2nd respondent to come to the conclusion that there was evasion of tax by the petitioner merely on account of lapsing of time mentioned in the E-way Bill because even the 2nd respondent does not say that there was any evidence of attempt to sell the goods to somebody else on 6.1.2020. On account of non-extension of the validity of the E-way Bill by petitioner or the auto trolly driver, no presumption can be draw that there was an intention to evade tax.“
“2. In this writ petition, petitioner has challenged the impugned order of the appellate Commissioner dated March 18, 2021 confirming the original order dated September 11, 2019 passed by the adjudicating authority under Section 129 of the West Bengal Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 for detention of the goods in question on the grounds that the E-way Bill relating to the consignment in question had expired one day before i.e. in the midnight of September 8, 2019, and that the goods was detained in the morning of September 9, 2019 on the grounds that the E-way Bill has expired which is even less than one day and extension could not be made and petitioner submits that delay of few hours even less than a day of expiry of the validity of the tenure of the E-way Bill was not deliberate and willful and was due to break down of the vehicle in question and there was no intention of any evasion of tax on the part of the petitioner.
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