1. Introduction: The process of filing appeals under Section 107 of the CGST Act, 2017, and Rule 108 of the CGST Rules, 2017 has raised concerns among tax practitioners. This analysis aims to clarify whether the absence of a physical order can lead to the dismissal of an appeal, considering both statutory provisions and a significant judgment from the Calcutta High Court.

    Historical Context and Provisions of Rule 108:

    1. Statutory Provisions for Appeals:

      • Section 107, along with Rule 108, enables taxpayers or the department to contest decisions/orders by adjudicating authorities under various GST Acts.
      • Section 107 mandates a pre-deposit of 10% for appeal initiation, with an automatic stay on the remaining balance.
    2. Initial Requirements of Rule 108:

      • The original Rule 108 required appellants to submit a certified copy of the decision/order within seven days of filing the appeal.
    3. Modification to Rule 108:

      • Notification No. 26/2022-Central Tax dated 26.12.2022 modified Rule 108, stating that if the order is available on the common portal, no physical submission is needed. In its absence, a self-certified copy must be provided within seven days.

    Judicial Pronouncement and its Implication:

    • In the case of Rama Shanker Modi vs. Assistant Commissioner (WPA 15639 of 2023), the Calcutta High Court held that the non-submission of a physical order within the prescribed timeframe cannot be a valid reason for rejecting an appeal.

    Conclusion: Considering the recent amendment to Rule 108 and the Calcutta High Court’s stance, it is evident that the non-submission of a physical copy should not lead to the dismissal of an appeal under Section 107. Tax practitioners and appellants must stay informed about these changes to protect their rights in the appeal process.

    Extract of amended Rule 108 of CGST Rules, 2017:

    • The amendment allows for the submission of a self-certified copy if the decision or order appealed against is not uploaded on the common portal, eliminating the mandatory requirement for a physical copy within seven days.

    Disclaimer: The content is prepared based on relevant provisions and information available at the time of preparation. While efforts have been made to ensure accuracy, completeness, and reliability, users are advised to refer to existing provisions of applicable laws. The information provided is not professional advice and is subject to change. The author bears no responsibility for consequences arising from the use of this information, and no liability is assumed for any damage resulting from its use.