Application for Restaurant on Shop License should not be Rejected only because GST Returns not Filed: Orissa HC [Read Order]

Restaurant - Shop License - GST Returns - Orissa High Court - GST - taxscan

In a recent case, the Chief Justice Dr. S. Muralidhar and Justice G. Satapathy bench of the Orissa High Court ruled that the application for a licence for a restaurant on shop should not be rejected solely because a Goods and Services Tax (GST) return has not yet been filed because it is unreasonable to expect that to happen without the Petitioner actually starting its business.

Aggrieved by the non-grant of a licence for an IMFL Restaurant on Shop under the name and style as “Galaxy Bar and Restaurant at Nayagarh”, the Petitioner has filed the writ petition seeking a direction to the Opposite Parties to process the Petitioner’s application and grant the licence.

The Petitioner is stated to have responded to various queries and also provided clarifications raised from different departments including excise which went in favour of him.

On January 24th, 2023, a new investigation was ordered, but its sole purpose was to ascertain if the Petitioner was registered under the GST Act and whether its returns under said Act had been filed.

R.P. Kar, counsel of the Petitioner draws attention of the Court to the application submitted by the Petitioner which itself shows that a copy of the GST registration certificate has been enclosed.

The bench observed that the counsel has rightly pointed out that unless the Petitioner is issued a licence and is able to commence its business, the question of filing a GST return would not arise. 

Eventually, the bench noted that because the petitioner has a GST registration certificate and no adverse findings have been made regarding the petitioner’s application for an ON shop licence, the Commissioner-Secretary, Excise Department, Government of Odisha should now finish the additional inquiries and inform the petitioner of the government’s decision on the petitioner’s application by no later than March 27, 2023.

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M/s. Galaxy Bar and Restaurant vs State of Odisha and others

Counsel for Appellant:   Mr. R.P. Kar

Counsel for Respondent:   Mr. Debakanta Mohanty


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