AMBICA ORGANICS AND ORS. Vs. COMMISSIONER, CENTRAL EXCISE & CUSTOMS, SURAT-I
LAWS(CE)-2015-3-5
CUSTOMS EXCISE AND GOLD(CONTROL) APPELLATE TRIBUNAL
Decided on March 04,2015

Ambica Organics And Ors. Appellant
VERSUS
Commissioner, Central Excise And Customs, Surat -I Respondents


Referred Judgements :-

M/S. PREMIER PACKAGING PVT. LTD. VS. CCE [REFERRED TO]
M/S. TEX -AGE VS. CC (EXPORTS) [REFERRED TO]
M/S. HARSINGHAR GUTKA PVT. LTD. VS. CCE [REFERRED TO]
M/S. S.J.N. AUTO INDUSTRIES PVT. LTD. VS. CCE [REFERRED TO]
PREMIER INSTRUMENTS AND CONTROLS VS. CCE [REFERRED TO]
INDO GREEN TEXTILE PVT. LTD. (NOW VS. COMMISSIONER OF CENTRAL EXCISE [REFERRED TO]


JUDGEMENT

P.K. Das, Member (J) - (1.)THESE appeals are arising out of a common order and therefore all are taken up together for disposal.
(2.)THE relevant facts of the case, in brief, are that M/s. Ambica Organics (Appellant No. 1) a partnership firm, was engaged in the manufacture of Textile Auxiliary Chemicals such as Polysol, MBX, Adhesives, Binders, UF Resin etc. They were clearing the goods without payment of duty by availing SSI exemption notification, as their clearance value was less than Rs. 1 Crore in a financial year. On 11/12.02.2006, the Central Excise Preventive Officers visited the appellant's factory and conducted stock verification and found excess stock of the finished goods valued at Rs. 83,248.00, which was seized by the Central Excise officers. The Central Excise Officers also found a data storage in electronic form in the USB drive and obtained a print out from the USB drive with the help of computer expert. On the basis of the said print out, it was ascertained that the appellants during the period 01.04.2005 to 08.02.2006, cleared the goods of Rs. 2,40,37,556.00 and not paid duty after exceeding of value of clearance of Rs. 1 Crore. The Central Excise officers recorded the statements of the partners of the firm and 30 persons, mostly who had purchased the impugned goods, and they admitted the fact of purchasing of goods from the appellant without bills.
A show cause notice dt. 09.10.2006 was issued to the appellant No. 1 and its two partners proposing demand of duty along with interest and imposition of penalty and also confiscation of the goods. The Adjudicating authority confirmed the demand of Central Excise duty of Rs. 23,78,329.00 alongwith interest and also imposed penalty of equal amount of duty on the goods cleared clandestinely and also confiscated the seized goods, released on bond backed by bank guarantee of Rs. 21,000.00 and appropriated towards fine in lieu of confiscation of the goods. It has also imposed personal penalties of Rs. 1 lakh each on the two partners, being Appellants No. 2 and 3 herein. By the impugned order, Commissioner (Appeals) upheld the Adjudication order. Hence, the appellants filed these appeals.

(3.)THE learned Advocate on behalf of the appellants submits that the entire case was made out on the basis of print out of USB drive and 30 statements of various persons, mostly claimed as purchaser of goods. It is submitted that one Shri Nitin Shah, claimed to be computer expert, accompanied with the Central Excise officers had connected the USB drive to a computer in the appellant's office and on the basis of print out contained in the USB drive, as claimed, it was ascertained the clearance value during the material period, over and above of Rs. 1 Crore. He submits that both the partners of the appellant firm disowned the contents of the print out in their statement. It is submitted that the data was not stored in the computer and it was retrieved from the USB drive. It is submitted that in the present case, the Central Excise officers have not followed the procedure under Section 36B of the said Act and the print out of USB drive has no evidentiary value. He relied upon the following decisions: -
a) M/s. Premier Instruments & Controls Pvt. Ltd. vs. CCE : 2005 (183) ELT 65 (T)

b) M/s. Premier Packaging Pvt. Ltd. vs. CCE : 2005 (184) ELT 165 (T)

c) M/s. Tex -Age vs. CC (Exports), 2008 (221) ELT 395 (T)

d) M/s. Harsinghar Gutka Pvt. Ltd. vs. CCE, 2008 (221) ELT 77 (T)

e) M/s. S.J.N. Auto Industries Pvt. Ltd. vs. CCE, 2008 (231) ELT A 101

f) M/s. Indo Green Textile Pvt. Ltd. vs. CCE : 2007 (212) ELT 343 (T)

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