• India
  • Sep 16

Govt notifies 31 benches of GST Appellate Tribunal

• The finance ministry has notified 31 benches of GST Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT) which will be set up in all states and Union Territories.

• The move will pave way for early resolution of over 14,000 cases of disputed tax demands.

• Currently, taxpayers aggrieved with ruling of tax authorities are required to move the respective High Courts. The resolution process takes a long time as High Courts are already burdened with backlog of cases and do not have a specialised bench to deal with GST cases.

• The number of appeals against tax demand raised by Central GST authorities has gone up to 14,227 by June-end, from 5,499 as of March 2021, according to data by the finance ministry.

• Setting up of state-level benches of GSTAT would help businesses by way of faster dispute resolution.

Constitution of Appellate Tribunal and benches

• Goods and Services Tax Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT) is constituted under provision of Section 109 of Goods and Service Tax Act, 2017.

• The GST Council, in its 49th meeting, approved the creation of the national bench of the Goods and Services Tax Appellate Tribunal (GSTAT) in principle. The National Bench of the Appellate Tribunal shall be situated at New Delhi. GSTAT shall be presided over by its president and shall consist of one technical member (Centre) and one technical member (state). The president of the national bench would be a former judge of the Supreme Court or former Chief Justice of a High Court.

• The national bench or regional benches of GSTAT shall have 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.

• Each state bench and area benches of GSTAT shall consist of a judicial member, one technical member (Centre) and one technical member (state) and the state government may designate the senior-most judicial member in a state as the state president.

• The Appellate Tribunal shall have the same powers as are vested in a civil court under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 while trying a suit.

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