Calcutta HC: Quashes recovery action against service recipient for GSTR-2A-GSTR-3B mismatch absent exceptional circumstances

Calcutta HC sets aside demand on recipient of service on account of mismatch in GSTR 2A and GSTR 3B in absence of any investigation done at the end of the supplier whose invoices are not reflecting in GSTR 2A; As regards the allegation of non-payment of tax by supplier and denial of ITC u/s 16(2)(c), while disapproving action of the Assistant Commissioner, State Tax ‘straight away’ directing assessee to reverse ITC without first bringing out the exceptional case where there has been collusion between assessee and selling dealer/supplier or where supplier is missing or the supplier has closed down its business or the it does not have any assets and such other contingencies; Court pointing out that section 16 (2) begins with a non-obstante clause, discusses the effect and purpose of Bharti Airtel, the operative portion of decision in Arise India whilst clarifying that “though the…decision arose under the provisions of the Delhi Value Added Tax Act, the scheme of availment of Input Tax Credit continues to remain the same even under the GST regime though certain procedural modification and statutory forms have been made mandatory.”; In conclusion, re-iterates that “there shall not be any automatic reversal of input tax credit from buyer on non-payment of tax by seller’” and ‘”In case of default in payment of tax by the seller recovery shall be made from the seller, however, reversal of credit from buyer shall also be an option available with the revenue authorities to address exceptional situations …”’ and allows assessee’s appeal