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The West Bengal Authority for Advance Ruling (AAR) has issued a significant judgment in the case of Paragon Polymer Products (P.) Ltd. (Order No. 27/WBAAR/2023-24 dated December 20, 2023). This ruling broadens the scope for claiming input tax credit (ITC) under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime, specifically for businesses employing book adjustments to settle payments with suppliers.


Paragon Polymer Products, a footwear company, intended to adopt a buy-back model for manufacturing. The company planned to outsource production to vendors, supplying raw materials and repurchasing finished goods. To streamline cash flow, they proposed settling payments through book adjustments, offsetting mutual debts arising from these transactions.

Key Issue:

The primary question addressed by the AAR was whether ITC eligibility would be impacted by settling payments via book adjustments.

AAR’s Holding:

The AAR ruled in favor of Paragon Polymer Products, holding that book adjustments constitute a valid mode of payment under the Central Goods and Services Tax Act (CGST Act). The AAR emphasized that the CGST Act does not impose restrictions on such settlements. As long as proper tax invoices are issued for supplied goods and tax payments are made within the stipulated 180 days from the invoice date, businesses can claim ITC irrespective of the payment method employed.


This ruling offers substantial advantages for businesses utilizing buy-back models or similar arrangements involving book adjustments. It underscores that the GST framework prioritizes tax compliance over inflexible payment mechanisms. Businesses can now leverage book adjustments as a strategic cash flow management tool without compromising their ability to claim ITC.

Supporting Precedent:

The AAR’s decision draws upon its previous ruling in the Senco Gold Ltd. case. This precedent established a broad interpretation of “consideration” under the CGST Act, encompassing not just monetary payments but also other assets deemed acceptable by the payee. This earlier ruling reinforces the AAR’s current stance on book adjustments being a legitimate form of payment under the Act.


The West Bengal AAR’s judgment provides much-needed clarity for businesses seeking to optimize cash flow through book adjustments. By confirming the eligibility for ITC claims under such scenarios, the AAR fosters a more adaptable and business-friendly GST environment.

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April 2024