In Association of Diplomate of National Board Doctors v. National Medical Commission and Ors [Writ Petition (Civil) No.904/2021 dated August 23, 2021], Association of Diplomate of National Board Doctors (Petitioner) has filed the current writ petition for quashing of Notification imposing of 18% Goods and Services Tax (GST) on fee deposited by Diplomate of National Board (DNB) students.
The Petitioner contends the course falls under the category of S no. 66(aa) of Notification No. 12/2017- Central Tax (Rate) dated June 28, 2017 (“Services Exemption Notification”) making the same to be exempted from GST. Along with that, even after clarification provided in Circular No. 151/07/2021-GST dated June 17, 2021, which mentioned that GST shall not apply to any fee or any amount charged by such Boards for conduct of such examinations including entrance examinations, The National Board of Examinations (“NBE”) is forcing its students to pay extra GST on Education/ Tuition fees by way of threatening mails saying that if fee is not paid till August 5th them candidature will be cancelled.
The Hon’ble Supreme Court of India thereby in the Order dated August 23, 2021 taking into account the submissions of the Applicant that GST at the rate of 18% is being charged on the course fee payable by candidates for the DNB course and that there has been fee hike, has issued a notice looking into the aspect and has further observed that the courses conducted by NBE as mentioned in Circular stands exempted.
FULL TEXT OF THE SUPREME COURT JUDGMENT/ORDER
1 Mr A N S Nadkarni, learned senior counsel appearing on behalf of the petitioner has urged two submissions:
(i) GST at the rate of 18% is being charged on the course fee payable by candidates for the DNB course conducted under the auspices of the National Board of Examinations; and
(ii) The fee of Rs 1.25 lakhs which was enhanced on 3 April 2019 is by virtue of a clarification dated 15 February 2021 (Annexure P-7) being applied to all ongoing broad specialty, special specialty and fellowship courses, irrespective of the year of joining.
2 As regards GST, it has been submitted that in terms of paragraphs 3.1 and 4 of the notification of the Union Ministry of Finance in the Department of Revenue dated 17 June 2021 (Annexure P-9), courses conducted by NBE stand exempted.
3 Issue notice, returnable on 3 September 2021.
4 Dasti, in addition, is permitted.
5 Since an application for interim relief is made on behalf of the petitioners, we direct that further proceedings be listed on 3 September 2021.
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