In this article we will discuss the inspection process under GST:
Under GST, a joint commissioner or an officer of higher rank can carry out GST inspection procedure if he/she has reason to believe that the taxpayer has done the following thing to evade tax:
Reason to believe for the GST inspection procedure means having factual knowledge of something (does not include direct knowledge) through which a reasonable person may reasonably conclude something. According to the Indian Penal Code (IPC); “A person is said to have ‘reason to believe’ something if he has adequate grounds to believe that thing.” In simple words, the reason to believe is purely determined by the person through examination and evaluation of fact that does not include his/her opinion.
No, there is no such provision under the GST Act that says the officer needs to state the reason to believe before issuing any order. The amendment Section 132(1) & (1A) of Income Tax Act also states that the person needs not to mention the reason to believe to any person or the Appellate Authority or any other authority.
We often get confused with the word inspection and search under GST due to which we use these words interchangeably. However, there is a fine line between these two words; let us see how these two words distinct from each other:
|Search under GST||Inspection under GST|
|Search is an attempt made by the government official either by a tax officer or police officer as the case may to examine a person, place, object, and so forth so as to find evidence of a crime. The search under GST can only be carried out under the valid authority of law.||On the other hand Inspection under GST is a softer provision that permits the officer to access any place of business of the following persons
The joint commissioner or any other higher rank officer can order search inspection under GST or if he/she has a “reasons to believe”. The order can be passed under GST when: