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Commissioner of Central Excise, Kanpur Versus M/s. Annakut Biscuits Co. Ltd.

2015 (4) TMI 652 - ALLAHABAD HIGH COURT

Extension of stay order - Power of tribunal to extend stay beyond period of 365 days - Held that:- Tribunal has noted that a waiver of pre-deposit and unconditional stay on the realisation of the adjudicated liability was granted by the Tribunal since a prima facie case was found in favour of the assessee. The Tribunal has also observed that the appeal has not been disposed of only on account of the pendency of several older appeals and not on account of any delay on the part of the assessee - E .....

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es from an order of the Customs, Excise & Service Tax Appellate Tribunal dated 30 September, 2014. The Revenue in the present appeal has formulated the following questions of law:- "(i) Whether, the Hon'ble CESTAT erred in granting waiver of pre-deposit of assessed demand in favour of the respondents during pendency of the appeal or for unlimited period thereby granting the stay ignoring provisions to section 35-C(2A) of the Central Excise Act, 1944 including third proviso made thro .....

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on 2A in Section 35C by Section 140 of Finance Act, 2002(20 of 2002) w.e.f. 11.05.2002, and third proviso by finance Act, 2013 will stand defeated, if the waiver of pre-deposit is granted indefinitely. The judgment in Kumar Cotton Mills Pvt. Ltd. (Supra) cannot be interpreted to give powers to the Tribunal to extend the order of waiver of pre-deposit indefinitely. The appeal is admitted on these questions & is by consent finally heard. Section 35C (2A) of the Central Excise Act, 19442 provid .....

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ed of within the period specified in the first proviso, the stay order shall, on the expiry of that period, stand vacated." In a similar case, in Commissioner, Customs and Central Excise Vs. M/s J.P. Transformers, which was decided by a Division Bench of this Court on 8 October 2013, the Division Bench referred to the decision of the Supreme Court in Commissioner of Customs and Central Excise, Ahmedabad Vs. Kumar Cotton Mills Pvt. Ltd. While considering the provisions of the second proviso .....

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the time specified. The reasoning of the Tribunal expressed in the impugned order and as expressed in the Larger Bench matter, namely, IPCL v. Commissioner of Central Excise, Vadodara (supra) cannot be faulted. However we should not be understood as holding that any latitude is given to the Tribunal to extend the period of stay except on good cause and only if the Tribunal is satisfied that the matter could not be heard and disposed of by reason of the fault of the Tribunal for reasons not attr .....

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