2022 (11) TMI 680 - HC - GST
Condonation of delay of a period of 3 and ½ years in filing present petition - appellant contend that the limitation would start to run only after a notification is issued constituting the Tribunal - HELD THAT:- Delay and laches are not to be calculated solely by the length of the time taken by the party to approach the legal forum. It is elementary principle that none stands to benefit by lodging an appeal or a petition belatedly. Unless and until there are material to show that owing to mala fide intentions and with certain ulterior motive, the petition was belated filed - it is found that there is no such allegation against the appellant. That apart, we also note that the appellant had deposited 10% of the disputed tax while filing an appeal before the first appellate authority and had the Tribunal been constituted and the appellant had filed an appeal before the Tribunal, it would have deposited further 20% of the disputed tax.
The dispute being one of classification of goods manufactured and marketed by the appellant, an adjudication is required to be done for which unless the respondents file their affidavit, the Court will not be in a position to give a binding decision - this Court is of the view that the writ petition should be heard and decided on merits rather being rejected on the ground of delay and laches. However, to be entitled to such benefit, the appellant is put on certain conditions.
The writ petition is restored to the file of this Court with a direction to the appellant to pay 20% of the balance disputed tax within a period of six weeks from the date of receipt of the server copy of this judgment - Appeal allowed.