Sourav Ganguly

The exuberant amount of service tax was charged during his term with the Kolkata Knight Riders and India © AFP

Kolkata: Feb 16, 2013

Former Indian captain Sourav Ganguly filed a petition to challenge a service tax claim of over Rs. Three crore. The Calcutta High Court, on Thursday, took his petition and directed the service tax authorities not to take any action against him for the next three months.

Ganguly has challenged the service tax claim of over Rs three crore, which was charged during the year when he played for the Kolkata Knight Riders for IPL and for India.

According to a PTI report published by the Indian Express, the original claim is of Rs 1.51 crore for the period between April, 2006 and March, 2010 while another Rs 1.51 crore is in the form of 100 per cent penalty on the amount.

The service tax demand was made under two components — business support service and business auxiliary service.

The claim for business support service was for Ganguly’s role in advertisements and other promotional activities for KKR. But he has already paid over Rs two crore as tax, according to counsel Amitava Mitra from the law firm Sinha and Company, which represents Ganguly.

“Ganguly was also charged service tax for playing cricket for the Indian team and other playing interests during the term. But under the Finance Act, players are not liable to pay service tax on earnings from playing,” Mitra stated.

Ganguly decided to move the high court after service tax commissioner K K Jaiswal upheld the claim of the department in November, 2012. The claim was made in September 2011.

The service tax authority was asked to file and affidavit by Justice Tapan Sen, stating its position on Ganguly’s plea within two weeks and asked Ganguly to reply to it by another two weeks.

The court also decided that no measures will be taken against Ganguly during this period and the matter would come up for hearing after three months.