Updated: December 2, 2021 7:51:12 am
A division bench of Kerala High Court on Wednesday said it was not satisfied with the reasons pointed out by the Centre and the GST Council on why petroleum products could not be brought under the GST regime.
One of the reasons cited by the Council was that during the pandemic, it would be difficult to bring petroleum products under the GST regime.
Last month, while hearing a petition of Kerala Pradesh Gandhi Darshanavedi, challenging the decision of the GST Council not to include petroleum products under GST, the High Court had directed the Council to file a statement.
On Wednesday, the standing counsel for the GST Council handed over the statement to the bench of Chief Justice S Manikumar and Justice Shaji P Chaly.
After perusing the statement filed on behalf of the Director of Goods and Services Tax Council, the bench observed, “Even though the matter was taken in the 45th GST Council meeting, three issues seemed to have been considered by the Council for bringing the petroleum products under the GST regime, i.e., (i) the matter involves high revenue implications, (ii) requires larger deliberations and (iii) during pandemic times, it would be difficult to bring petroleum products under the GST regime.”
The court observed, “We are not satisfied with the reasons. There should be some discussion and genuine reasons as to why petroleum products cannot be brought under the GST regime. Further, the pandemic period cannot be cited as a reason. It is well known that even during the pandemic, several decisions were taken involving revenue, after deliberations.”
Subsequently, the court directed the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs to file a detailed statement with reference to the observations made above and the prayers sought for. The court posted the matter in the second week of December.
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