Bail granted to person allegedly Selling Coal without issuing GST Invoices

Bail granted to person allegedly Selling Coal without issuing GST Invoices

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Bail granted to person allegedly Selling Coal without issuing GST Invoices

 

Bail Application No. 2381 of 2021
Vikas Bansal
Vs
UOI
(Gauhati High Court)

 

Short Overview of the case:
It is found that in his statement, recorded under Section 70 of the CGST Act, the petitioner has subscribed to the statement of aforesaid Amit Kumar made before the Senior Intelligence Officer of the CGST.
 It has also come out from his statement that whatever coal he had purchased from Coal Importers of Gujarat and Punjab were sold within the State of Punjab and Haryana to various small manufacturers without issuing GST invoices and such transactions were not reflected in the books of accounts although a part of such sale of coal in Punjab and Haryana was done under proper GST.
The purchase documents covering the goods supplied/sold in Punjab and Haryana without issuance of GST invoices were used for generating fake GST invoices issued in the name of M/s Bansal Associates, Guwahati and to various other customers directly which includes Sri Amit Kumar also without supply of any
It has also come out from the materials on record that the State GST, Assam conducted a raid at the declared business premises of M/s Bansal Associates in Guwahati on 19.08.2021 and seized all documents, including computers, mobile, etc.
He had also informed the State GST, Assam that his firm M/s Bansal Associates is already under investigation by DGGI, Guwahati Zonal Unit. The CGST authority, on verification of the materials collected against the petitioner during the course of investigation, found that the petitioner had evaded GST of Rs. 15,05,99,941/-. The 2151 e-way bills issued were also found to be bogus and the vehicles declared in those e-way bills involving tax of Rs. 7 crores had never carried any goods from Gujarat/Haryana/Ludhiana to Guwahati as claimed.
Offence in the instant case being an economic offence should be looked into from a different perspective although at the same time Court should not lose sight of the fact in respect of the right of the petitioner to get bail and court has to balance between both these aspects. At the same time, in the light of the above judgments, rendered by the Hon’ble Supreme Court, this Court also needs to look into the severity of the punishment.
 This Court also cannot lose sight of the fact that the petitioner has already been in custody for 30 (thirty) days till date and that there is no instance in the record to indicate that further custodial detention of the petitioner is essential for the purpose of further investigation of the case.
In the instant case, taking into account the alleged amount of evasion of tax, the case falls under Section 132(1)(i) of the AGST Act and the punishment prescribed for such an offence may extend to imprisonment for 5 (five) years and with fine.
As per the materials on record, there is no indication that the petitioner, if granted bail, is likely to evade the trial or there is an apprehension of his tampering with the witnesses.
On the other hand, this Court has also taken note of the fact that he being a resident of the State of Assam, there is every possibility of securing his presence at the time of trial. The maximum punishment which can be imposed in this case is imprisonment for 5 (five) years and fine, and as such, the severity of punishment which conviction will entail has also been taken into consideration, as mandated by Jagan Mohan Reddy (supra).
In view of the discussions above, in the considered view of this Court, the accused-petitioner deserves to be granted bail.
Accordingly, the accused-petitioner, named above, be released on bail in connection with the abovementioned case on furnishing bail bond of Rs. 1,00,000/- (one lakh) with two suitable sureties of the like amount, to the satisfaction of the learned Chief Judicial Magistrate, Kamrup (Metro), Guwahati.

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