The respondent is directed to process the refund claim filed in the prescribed form RFD-01 online portal for the month of February 2018 and March 2018 for an amount of Rs. 93.54 lakh along with simple interest at the rate of 6% per annum.
Section 54 of the CGST Act, 2017 — Refund –The petitioner prayed for quashing the required proceedings in relation to the impugned “Deficiency Memo” in FORM RFD-03 dated 17.07.2020; directing the respondents to entertain the refund filed in prescribed FORM RFD-01 online portal for the month of February 2018 and March 2018. The petitioner filed the refund claims of the IGST paid on the Ocean Freight under the reverse charge mechanism after the decision of this Court in the writ-applicant’s own case which was connected with the main petition of Mohit Minerals (Pvt) Ltd. The Deficiency Memo was issued on an erroneous premise that the refund claims were not filed within the statutory time limit as provided under Section 54 of the Act. This Court has earlier held that the levy of the IGST under the RCM on the Ocean Freight for the service provided by a person located in a non-taxable territory by way of transportation of goods through vessel from a place outside India to customs frontier of India is unconstitutional. The court observed that Article 265 of the Constitution of India provides that no tax shall be levied or collected except by authority of law. Since the amount of IGST collected by the Central Government is without authority of law, the Revenue is obliged to refund the amount erroneously collected. Section 54 is applicable only for claiming refund of any tax paid under the provisions of the Act. The amount collected by the Revenue is without the authority of law is not considered as tax collected by them and, therefore, Section 54 is not applicable.
Held that:- The Hon’ble High Court allowed the petition by quashing the deficiency memo dated 17.07.2020. Further directed the respondent to process the refund claim filed in the prescribed form RFD-01 online portal for the month of February 2018 and March 2018 along with simple interest at the rate of 6% per annum and complete the exercise by 17th August 2021.