RELIEF FROM C.B.E.C. – SERVICE TAX ON EDUCATION INSTITUTION FOR 01-04-13 TO 10-07-14
Today we have presented the case of Education Institutions before Sh. S. M. Tata, Commissioner, Service Tax, Central Board of Excise & Customs in the North Block, Ministry of Finance, Government of India.
Education Institutions across India were under deep pressure from the retrospective and regressive notices, summons and show cause (SCN) issued by the Service Tax department for Service Tax Liability on the Transportation Fees charged by them from their Staff, Students and Faculty for the period from 01-04-2013 to 10-07-2014. This was due to a change in the definition of the “Auxiliary Education Service” by removing term ‘by’ from the definition, that has resulted in across the board on all the Education Institutions in India. Further, in certain cases the Assessing Officer even resorted to covering the ‘Hostel Fees’ received by the Education Institutions during this period under the Service Tax Net going beyond the scope of Letter issued by DGCEI.
We have been continuously interacting with the CBEC and TRU for review of the aforesaid letter, considering the Legal Provisions, Intention of Law and Prevalent Practice of the Industry. Today we have represented our case in person to the Panel of CBEC headed by Sh. S. M. Tata, Commissioner, Service Tax at CBEC in the Ministry of Finance, Government of India. We are extremely thankful to Sh. S. M. Tata for his positive response to our plea and initiating the provisions of ‘Section 11C : Power not to recover duty of excise not levied or short-levied as a result of general practice of the Cetral Excise Act’.
Once the proceedings of issue of Notification under Section 11C has been completed, the entire liability of Service Tax on Transportation Fees charged by Education Institutes for the period from 01-04-2013 to 10-07-2014 shall become null and void. This process may take couple of months time as the will require obtaining reports from all the commissionerates across india.
However, till the Notification under Section 11C is not issued the assessing officers may continue proceedings under the notices already issued or summons issued and may even issue Show Cause Notices to avoid the demand being time barred.