Expiry of e-way bill is not tax evasion

expiry of e way bill is not tax evasion
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Last updated on August 24th, 2022 at 06:44 pm

Expiry of e-way bill is not tax evasion


E-way bill mechanism was implemented for hassle-free movement of goods and to eliminate the requirement of a separate transit pass for each state. The e-way bill mechanism also envisaged curbing tax evasion and finding the fraudsters who were involved in the movement of goods without tax invoices.

Validity of e-way bill

The validity of an e-way bill is dependent upon the type of vehicle and the distance it requires to cover to reach the destination from the place of origin. If the consignment of goods cannot reach the destination within the validity period of the e-way bill. In that case, the transporter can extend the validity by providing the explanations/reasons requiring extension before 8 hours of expiry or after 8 hours of expiry of the validity period.  {The window for extension of e way bill is available for 16 hours i.e. 4 pm to 8 am}

Section 68 – The person in charge of the conveyance carrying goods should carry a physical or electronic copy of the invoice/bill of supply/delivery challan/bill of entry AND a valid e-way bill for verification.

Section 129 If the goods are being transported in contravention of the provisions of the Act or Rules then the goods and conveyance can be detained seized and will be released on payment of the requisite penalty. (Read detailed provisions of Section 129)

Circular 64/2018 – If the person in charge of conveyance and consignment of goods produces a copy of a valid e-way bill and invoice/bill of supply/delivery challan/bill of entry then proceedings u/s 129 shall not be initiated for clerical errors/minor mistakes like :

  • Spelling mistake in the name of consignor or consignee. (GSTIN is correct)
  • Error in Pincode of consignor or consignee. (Correct Pincode should not increase the validity period of the e-way bill)
  • Error in the address of consignee but the locality and other details are correct.
  • Error in the HSN Code (Rate should be correct).
  • Error in the vehicle number.
  • Error in the document number.


Proceedings u/s 129 should not be initiated without ascertaining that it is a case of willful evasion of tax 

Union of India vs Satyam Shivam Papers Pvt. Ltd. [SC Order dated 12th January 2022]

Conveyance carrying consignment could not reach the destination due to road blockage/ traffic jams due to protests in the country which were outside the control of taxpayers.

Honorable Supreme Court Judgement held that mere expiry of the validity period of an e-way bill is not enough to draw an inference that the taxpayer has evaded tax. There is no evidence of any attempt to sell the goods to somebody else. Supreme Court levied a cost of Rs 59,000/- over and above the cost levied by the High Court for harassment to the taxpayer. {Download the order}


Daya Shankar Singh vs. State of Madhya Pradesh [HC Order dated 10th August 2022]

Conveyance carrying consignment had reached the destination even after the breakdown before the expiry of the validity period of the e-way bill. The conveyance was intercepted and detained (after 4:30 hours of expiry) when it was going towards the weighbridge on the instruction of the consignee.

High Court held that the e-way bill had expired but when Officer could not establish any fraudulent intent and evasion of tax or loss to the Revenue then impugned notice/order could not have been passed. The penalty order was set aside and the amount of penalty already deposited should be refunded with 6% interest within 30 days. {Download the order}



When all requisite documents required for transportation are readily available are bonafide and correct, merely on account of expiry of the validity of e-way bill without establishing any fraudulent intent, negligence, tax evasion proceedings of detention, seizure under section 129 shall not be initiated.


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Disclaimer: The above content is for general info purpose only and does not constitute professional advice. The author/ website will not be liable for any inaccurate / incomplete information and any reliance you place on the content is strictly at your risk.

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