“Central Excise Dispute: Fresh Start Ordered! Court Remands Case for Tribunal to Reassess Impact of Missing Letter on Show Cause Notices” Central Excise Act, 1944 – Section 35C (2) – Orders of Appellate Tribunal – The appellant, M/S Madura Coats is involved in a legal dispute with the Commissioner of Central Excise regarding the clearance of goods without payment of duty – The case involves multiple orders and appeals, with the primary contention being the non-furnishing of a crucial letter dated 20.01.2001 – The main issue is whether the non-furnishing of the letter dated 20.01.2001 has caused prejudice to the appellant’s ability to respond to the show cause notices effectively – The appellant contends that the final order by the tribunal, which directed the respondent to furnish the letter dated 20.01.2001, is binding and its non-compliance should result in the appeals being allowed – The respondent argues that the letter dated 20.01.2001 is the appellant’s own document and its absence does not prejudice the appellant’s case – They also assert that the appellant has been delaying the adjudication process – The court affirmed the High Court’s decision to remand the matter back to the tribunal for fresh adjudication of the show cause notices, subject to the appellant demonstrating how the non-furnishing of the letter has caused prejudice – The court reasoned that the letter dated 20.01.2001 was not relied upon adversely against the appellant and that the appellant should have retained a copy of their own document – The court found that the non-furnishing of the letter did not violate principles of natural justice as it was not used to draw adverse inferences against the appellant – The appeals were disposed of with no order as to costs, and the matter was remanded back to the tribunal for fresh adjudication, with the appellant’s contentions kept open


May 5, 2024

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