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2023 (2) TMI 361 - HC - GST
Parallel proceedings - Validity of summons issued - Summons challenged on the ground that both the Central and State Authorities do not have powers to initiate proceedings against the petitioner simultaneously under the respective GST Acts with regard to the same subject matter - HELD THAT:- Admittedly, the petitioner has not participated in the personal hearing and instead he has chosen to file this Writ Petition, challenging the impugned Summons. Necessarily, to substantiate his defence that he cannot be once again prosecuted by the State Authority under the TNGST Act, 2017, he has to participate in the enquiry to be conducted by the fifth respondent and only then it can be ascertained whether the proceedings initiated by the Central and State Authority are one and the same involving the same subject matter. Truth will come out only when the petitioner appears before the respondent pursuant to the Summons received by him and not otherwise - If it is the same subject matter, the State Authority cannot prosecute the petitioner once again as the Central Authority has already initiated action against the petitioner in respect of the very same subject matter.
Necessarily, the petitioner will have to participate in the personal hearing and state all his objections with regard to the action launched by the State Authority under the TNGST Act, 2017. Unless and until the petitioner participates in the impugned proceedings viz., the impugned Summons dated 18.10.2022, truth cannot be unearthed with regard to the petitioner's contentions - Since the petitioner did not participate in the personal hearing afforded to him as per the impugned Summons, this Court deems it fit to grant one more opportunity for the petitioner to participate in the personal hearing.
This Writ Petition is disposed of by directing the petitioner to appear before the fifth respondent on 16.02.2023 at 10:30 a.m. without fail and state all his objections in line with his reply dated 27.10.2022 sent to the impugned Summons and the fifth respondent shall consider the petitioner's objections on merits and in accordance with law and thereafter, decide as to whether the petitioner can be prosecuted once again under the TNGST Act, 2017 when the Central Authority has already prosecuted him under the CGST Act, 2017.