14.02.2023: GST Council to discuss GST Appellate Tribunals at Feb 18 meeting

In what could help in speeding up finding legal solutions to GST related issues, upcoming GST Council is likely to deliberate on the group of ministers (GoM) report for constitution of GST Appellate Tribunals across the country.

The report which is likely to be discussed in detail at the upcoming GST Council meet, which is  scheduled to take place on 18th February in Delhi at Vigyan Bhawan, proposes to constitute a Principal Bench of the Appellate Tribunal at New Delhi, sources told CNBCTV18.
Other key recommendations of the GoM include — GST Appellate Tribunal will be created for hearing appeals against orders passed by the Appellate
Authority or the Revisional Authority,  proposed principal Bench to be presided over by the President and shall consist of a Technical Member (Centre) or a Technical Member (State), among others, sources said.
According to the proposal of the GoM, “jurisdiction to hear appeals against the orders passed by the Appellate Authority or the Revisional Authority in the cases where one of the issues involved relates to the place of supply shall lie only with the Principal Bench. And, the Principal Bench shall constitute of such number of Benches at such locations in States/areas as may be recommended by GST Council, based on the request of State Governments,” sources privy to the agenda told CNBCTV18.
It is also proposed by the GoM that “each area/ state Bench of Appellate Tribunal shall also consist of a Judicial Member and a Technical Member (Centre) or a Technical Member (State).”
The 6 member GoM, headed by Dushyant Singh Chautala, Deputy Chief Minister of Haryana has also proposed in its report that ” there shall be a President, by general or a special order, to distribute the business or transfer cases among the Benches. And, the senior most Judicial Member within such Benches as may act as the Vice President for such Benches and he shall exercise such powers of the President as may be prescribed but for all other purposes shall continue to be considered as a Member,” sources added.
When it comes to the cases and their treatment, the GoM proposes that “cases where the tax or input tax credit involved or the amount of fine, fee or penalty determined in any order appealed against, does not exceed fifty lakh rupees and which does not involve any question of law may, with the approval of the President and subject to such conditions as may be prescribed on the recommendations of the Council, be heard by a bench consisting of a single Member,” sources added.
In cases of difference of opinion, sources added that the GoM has recommended that ” the Members of a Bench in such cases shall state the points on which they differ, and the case shall be referred by the President for hearing on those points or to another Member from a Bench within the State or another State, where no such Member is available in a Bench within the State, and such points shall be decided according to the opinion of the majority of Members who have heard the case, including those who first heard it,” sources added.
It is now to be seen whether GST Council on 18th February accepts all the recommendations made by the GoM or it gets adopted with certain changes.
Source: CNBC TV18

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