Godrej Consumer Products Ltd.- 2020 (34) G.S.T.L. 272 (A.A.A.R – Himachal Pradesh)

Mistake in entering distance in E-way Bill is a typographic error and may be treated as a minor one.

Facts- Godrej Consumer Products Ltd., Village Katha, Tehsil Nalagarh, District Solan, Himachal Pradesh, is engaged in the manufacture and sale of various personal care and home insecticide products and duly registered with GST Department of H.P. having GSTIN No. 02AABCG3365J3ZS and paying applicable taxes under GST Act, 2017. The Supplier had issued Invoice. Further supplier had handed over said goods to Transporter for transporting the same from Puducherry to Himachal Pradesh. The supplier also generated-way Bill No. PY0322001529 from online portal on 7-9-2018 at 5:29 PM and provided the same to supplier for transportation of goods. The inspection team intercepted and detained the vehicle by alleging that, the aforementioned consignment was accompanied with expired E-way Bill which is contravention of Rule 138 of CGST and HPGST Rules, 2017, hence attracts penal action u/s. 129(1) of Acts.

Held- The Appellate Authority held that due to a typographic error while generating E-way Bill, the petitioner mentioned approx distance between Puducherry to Himachal Pradesh as 20 Kilometers instead of 2000 Kilometers. As a result, a validity of one day has been calculated by the E-way Bill portal instead of twenty days and the E-way Bill subsequently got expired on the very next day i.e. on 8-9- 2018. The consignment was intercepted on dated 15th Sep., 2018 and thereby a tax/penalty has been imposed under Section 129 of HPGST/CGST Act, 2019 for contravention of Rule 138. As per the circumstantial evidence and as per the decision of Hon’ble Kerala High Court in Sabitha Riyaz v. The Union of India, it appears that the mistake in entering distance in E-way Bill is a typographic error and may be treated as a minor one. Therefore, the appeal of the appellant is accepted and the order of the Assistant Commissioner State Taxes & Excise-Cum proper officer Baddi Circle-II is set aside. The additional demand of Rs. 1,54,798/- (IGST-77,399/- + penalty INR 77,399/-) deposited by the appellant may be refunded and the penalty of Rs. 500/- under SGST and Rs. 500/- under CGST u/s. 125 of CGST/HPGST Act, 2017 is imposed on the Appellant in accordance to CBIC Circular No. 64/38/2018-GST, dated 14th Sep., 2018 and the State Circular No. 12-25/2018-19-EXN-GST-(575)-6009-6026, dated 13th March, 2019. The judgment in this case was reserved on 4-1-2020 and is released today.

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