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CESTAT : Quarrying, transporting, unloading of boulders for national highway construction, exempt from tax

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CESTAT concurs with Commissioner (Appeals), extends service tax exemption to activities of quarrying, sorting, loading, transportation and unloading of boulders for contractor engaged in construction of National Highway, under Notification No. 17/2005-ST;

Rejects Revenue’s stand that said activities were taxable as “Cargo Handling Services” in terms of sub-clauses (a), (b) & (c) of Section 65A(2) of Finance Act; Examining the scope of work contracted, CESTAT observes that services provided were in respect of construction of road, eligible for exemption under said Notification; Loading, unloading and transportation activities were merely ancillary and could not be considered as main services, which included excavation, sizing, stockpiling, and over burden removal;

Hence, they merit classification as “Site formation and clearance, excavation, earth moving and demolition services” provided for construction of National Highway  : Mumbai CESTAT


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