Case Law Details

Case Name : Mukul Mittal Vs Directorate General of GST Intelligence (Delhi High Court)
Appeal Number : Bail Appln. No. 168/2021
Date of Judgement/Order : 03/02/2021
Related Assessment Year :
Courts : All High Courts (6447) Delhi High Court (1677)

Mukul Mittal Vs Directorate General of GST Intelligence (Delhi High Court)

The petitioner has been in custody now for 56 days. The maximum sentence provided for the offence alleged against the petitioner is imprisonment for a period of five years, therefore the learned Chief Metropolitan Magistrate is required to take congnizance on the complaint is required to be filed in 60 days.

On a query put to the Senior Investigating Officer of the respondent Mr. Neeraj, as to whether the respondent is likely to file a complaint within four days, he very fairly states that since around 100 hard-drives have been recovered from the offices of the petitioner and his brother, the same are required to be analyzed and a detailed investigation is required to be carried out to find out the number of fake firms, the complete transactions carried out as also the number of beneficiaries of the fake bills and invoices generated by the petitioner and the co-accused. He further states that a comprehensive complaint cannot possibility be filed in four days.

It is thus evident that the respondent does not propose to file a complaint within 60 days and after 4 days the petitioner would in any case be entitled to the default bail as a matter of right.

Consequently, the petitioner is directed to be released on bail on his furnishing a personal bond in the sum of ₹1 lakh with one surety bond of the like amount subject to the satisfaction of the learned CMM/Duty Magistrate concerned, further subject to the condition that the petitioner will not leave the country without the prior permission of the Court concerned and in case of change of mobile number and/or the residential address the petitioner will intimate the same to the Court concerned by way of an affidavit.

FULL TEXT OF THE HIGH COURT ORDER /JUDGEMENT

The hearing has been conducted through Video Conferencing.

1. By the present petition, the petitioner seeks regular bail pursuant to the Arrest Memo dated 9th December, 2020 for offence punishable under Section 132 (1)(i) of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017.

2. According to learned counsel for the petitioner, petitioner filed an anticipatory bail before the learned Sessions Judge on 27.10.2020 where a statement was made that investigation from the petitioner is underway. Thereafter the petitioner appeared repeatedly for joining the investigation. The petitioner was arrested on 9th December, 2020 and no information in this regard was given to the learned Court where the anticipatory bail petition of the petitioner was still pending.

3. Learned counsel for the petitioner further states that after the petitioner was arrested no custodial investigation was carried out; as the petitioner was sent to the judicial custody on the same day and not even once the petitioner was made to join investigation in judicial custody by seeking permission from the Court concerned. Learned counsel for the petitioner contends that all these firms were registered under the GST Act and have due registration certificates and thus cannot be termed as fake firms.

4. A status report and a further detailed status report has been filed by the respondent. In nutshell the allegations against the petitioner and his brother Ankur Mittal are that they were providing fake invoices through various firms, floated/ managed either directly by them or by putting convenient people to manage their affairs, without any corresponding supply of goods and services. According to the respondent around 400 such fake firms were created by the petitioner and his brother Ankur Mittal and invoices issued.

5. As per the status report searches were conducted on 16th October, 2019 at the offices and residence of Ankur Mittal to unearth the said tax evasion, however, the offices were found closed and Ankur Mittal was not present even at home. Despite summons being issued, Ankur Mittal did not join the investigation repeatedly and thereafter search was conducted at one of his office located at G-116, 11th Floor, DLF Capital Greens, Shivaji Marg, Karampura, Moti Nagar, Delhi on 30th January, 2020 wherein incriminating documents including digital devices, cheque books of many companies/firms were recovered. Thereafter, also Ankur Mittal failed to join the investigation.

6. Simultaneously, notice was issued to the petitioner, who is the elder brother of Ankur Mittal on 6th November, 2019 to join the investigation followed by further notices, however the petitioner also failed to join the investigation and joined only after filing the anticipatory bail application before the learned Sessions Judge.

7. In the further detailed status report filed by the respondent, the modus-operandi adopted by the petitioners has been highlighted. It is noted that though the petitioner in his statement stated that he did not know anything about the fake invoice billing of his brother Ankur Mittal, however as per the statement of Ankur Mittal dated 12th September, 2020 the petitioner was working with him in his fake invoice racket and helped him establish an office at G-116, 11th Floor, DLF Capital Greens as mentioned above. The petitioner also revealed to be in possession of two foreign origin SIMs which were being used for Whatsapp chat with other people and also for communicating how to generate fake E-way bills without supplying corresponding goods by the said vehicle.

8. According to the detailed status report, by now at least two end users namely, Larson & Turbo Limited and Rama Krisha Electro Components Private Limited who were beneficiaries of the fake invoices generated from the fake firms of the applicant and Ankur Mittal have been tracked and the two companies have voluntarily deposited ₹22 crores and ₹7 crores respectively after initiation of the proceedings.

9. The petitioner has been in custody now for 56 days. The maximum sentence provided for the offence alleged against the petitioner is imprisonment for a period of five years, therefore the learned Chief Metropolitan Magistrate is required to take congnizance on the complaint is required to be filed in 60 days.

10. On a query put to the Senior Investigating Officer of the respondent Mr. Neeraj, as to whether the respondent is likely to file a complaint within four days, he very fairly states that since around 100 hard-drives have been recovered from the offices of the petitioner and his brother, the same are required to be analyzed and a detailed investigation is required to be carried out to find out the number of fake firms, the complete transactions carried out as also the number of beneficiaries of the fake bills and invoices generated by the petitioner and the co-accused. He further states that a comprehensive complaint cannot possibility be filed in four days.

11. It is thus evident that the respondent does not propose to file a complaint within 60 days and after 4 days the petitioner would in any case be entitled to the default bail as a matter of right.

12. Consequently, the petitioner is directed to be released on bail on his furnishing a personal bond in the sum of ₹1 lakh with one surety bond of the like amount subject to the satisfaction of the learned CMM/Duty Magistrate concerned, further subject to the condition that the petitioner will not leave the country without the prior permission of the Court concerned and in case of change of mobile number and/or the residential address the petitioner will intimate the same to the Court concerned by way of an affidavit.

13. Petition is accordingly disposed of.

14. Order be uploaded on the website of this Court.

Download Judgment/Order

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