Customs, Excise & Service Tax Appellate Tribunal (CESTAT): This appeal was filed before Sulekha Beevi C.S., Member.

Facts of the case were such that appellants were engaged in manufacturing of wheels and components for cars, jeeps, tractors, commercial vehicles, etc. and were registered with the Central Excise Department.

It was found that assessee had availed CENVAT credit of service tax paid on various input services including outward freight. A show cause notice was issued proposing to recover the ineligible availed credit along with interest for which penalty was imposed. After due process of law, in respect of Goods Transport Agency services the adjudicating authority did not allow CENVAT credit but for all other services the same was allowed. Hence, this appeal was filed before the Tribunal.

M. Kannan, counsel on behalf of the appellant had submitted that appellant had sold goods to customers on FOR basis. Therefore, place of removal should be buyer’s premises. Adjudicating authority found the appellant to be not eligible for the credit of the service tax paid on the freight for outward transportation of goods upto buyer’s premises. Whereas, L. Nandakumar, counsel on behalf of respondent contended that appellant needs to produce documents in order to prove that the place of removal is the buyer’s premises. Counsel relied on the case of CCE v. Ultra Tech Cement Ltd., (2018) 9 GSTL 337 (SC) where it was held that credit is eligible from the place of removal upto the buyer’s premises.

Tribunal observed that in cases such as this when the sale takes at buyer’s premises, the place of removal is the buyer’s premises. Thus, it was necessary to determine the place of removal to consider the eligibility of credit of service tax paid on freight charges upto the buyer’s premises. Therefore, Tribunal concluded it to be a fit case for remanding it to the adjudicating authority to look into the issue of eligibility of credit on GTA services after determining the place of removal after considering the decision referred above. Therefore, the impugned order was set aside. [Wheels India Ltd. v. Commissioner (GST), 2019 SCC OnLine CESTAT 46, decided on 14-03-2019]

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