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M/s. Jay Bharath Associates Versus Commissioner of Service Tax, Chennai

Survey and Exploration of Mineral services - Non-payment of service tax - penalty - Held that: - the issue whether the subject services of drilling of shot hole would come within the ambit of survey and exploration of mineral services was subject matter of doubt and dispute - There is no specific allegation of fraud or willful suppression in the show cause notice. We find that the department has failed to establish the deliberate attempt to evade payment of service tax by suppressing or mis-decl .....

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17 - Dated:- 4-9-2017 - Ms. Sulekha Beevi C.S., Member ( Judicial ) And Shri B. Ravichandran, Member ( Technical ) Shri Raghavan Ramabhadran, Advocate for the Appellant Shri K. Veerabhadra Reddy, JC (AR) for the Respondent ORDER Per Ms. Sulekha Beevi C.S. The appellants are engaged in providing seismic job services and shot hole drilling services mainly to M/s. ONGC for survey and exploration of mineral oil/gases. They obtained service tax registration under the category of Survey and Exploratio .....

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process of law, the adjudicating authority confirmed the demand of ₹ 2,71,80,349/- being the service tax for the period 10.9.2004 to 31.3.2007 along with interest and also appropriated the amount of ₹ 2,67,31,766/- which was already paid by the appellant. The adjudicating authority also imposed penalty of ₹ 2.75 crores under section 78 of the Finance Act besides confirming the demand of interest of ₹ 4,48,583/- till the date of payment. Hence this appeal. 2. On behalf of .....

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es and of depth varying from 20 metres to 60 metres etc. The detailed activities were in the nature of support services to ONGC for conducting seismic job survey and shot hole drilling services. On the date of filling the bid document and pre bid conference dated 5/7.2004 the said services were not taxable under the existing taxable category of services specified under the existing taxable category of services specified under the Finance Act, 1994. The appellant vide their letter dated 16.09.200 .....

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e excluding service tax and hence service tax, if any payable is to the account of ONGC. Copy of the letters dated 16.09.2004 and 25.11.2004 were furnished before the authorities before. The appellant paid service tax of ₹ 1,27,793/- on 28.05.2005 to the exchequer voluntarily without any recovery from ONGC. However, as ONGC refused to pay service tax the appellant thereafter could not pay service tax. Further, appellant had entered into contract with M/s. M/s. Geofizyka Tourn (GT) to provi .....

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lue by the main contractor. In any case the service to the GT was not complete and the contract was cancelled. The matter is under dispute between the parties. 3. He further submitted that the issue whether the appellants are liable to pay service tax on such services has been decided against the appellant in the case of Shiv-Vani Oil & Gas Exploration Services Ltd. Vs. Commissioner of Service Tax, New Delhi 2017 (47) STR 200 (Tri. Del.). Although the appellants had contested their liability .....

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the said aspect, the matter requires to be remanded to the adjudicating authority. 4. Against this, the ld. AR Shri K. Veerabhadra Reddy reiterated the findings in the impugned order. He submitted that there was deliberate delay as well as non-payment of service tax on the part of the appellant. The same would not have come to light but for the audit conducted by the department. Therefore, the penalty imposed is legal and proper. 5. Heard both sides and perused the records. 6. On behalf of the a .....

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llant has discharged the entire service tax liability prior to issuance of show cause notice. On the facts stated before us, as well as considering the submissions made, we are able to see that the issue whether the subject services of drilling of shot hole would come within the ambit of survey and exploration of mineral services was subject matter of doubt and dispute. The Tribunal in the case of Shiv-Vani Oil & Gas Exploration Services Ltd. (supra) has held that such activities would also .....

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