SHC adjourns hearing of a petition by Amreli Steels until Dec 02

Karachi:- The hearing of a constitution petition filed by Amreli Steels against Pakistan Standards and Quality Control Authority (PSQCA), Chief Collector Customs Appraisement, Collector Customs West, Chief Collector Enforcement, Collector Port Muhammad Bin Qasim , Trustees of Port of Karachi and Chairman Port Qasim Authority was adjourned till Dec 02 after PSQCA submitted a Counter Affidavit here Friday.

Asim Mansoor Khan, Deputy Attorney General for Pakistan appearing for the PSQCA submitted the written reply in which respondent PSQCA conceded that a certification from them is mandatory for landing and release of imported steel items. The respondent also conceded that it has a responsibility towards import of standard material and also to check and disallow any landing in violation of the “Quality Standards”.

Amreil Steel filed the petition maintain that steel products fall under Compulsory marks scheme of PSQCA which needs to be inspected and verified at Port as well as ware houses of importers so that random samples be collected for testing at Quality Control Laboratory of PSQCA

The petitioner maintained that this mandatory provision viz section 14 of the PSQCA Act was also advertized through a public notice in dailies Dawn and Business Recorder on 25-7-2014. The petitioner also maintains that as per Para no 5 (B) (ii) of import policy all foreign manufacturers of steel products including steel bars, billets etc are required to obtain a “Conformity Assessment Report”. The law also mandates that all the ports/terminal operators including KICT, AICT, BOML shall collect such report/certification in original and produce before the Custom authorities and other authorities like PSQCA when ever asked for.

The particular law prohibits manufacture, storage or sale of any article which do not conform to the “Pakistan Standards” set be PSQCA while any item imported which conforms to a particular Pakistani standard is to be marked with a “distinctive mark”.

The petitioner maintained that certain parties are importing steel products from different countries which do not carry any mark and do not conform to prescribed standards, Resultantly the same are neither inspected nor certified and hence do not carry any mark.

The petitioner maintains that ports of Karachi are not only allowing the landing of such prohibited imported consignments but also in league with Pakistan Customs are releasing the same for local market consumption.

The cheap and inferior mild steel products imported and released by Custom Authorities in violation of the mandatory provisions of law and injurious to the interests of the petitioner as well as other producers, the petitioner maintained,

The court was prayed to declare that import and discharge of mild steel products, bars, billets, mild steel rods not carrying certification and logo is in violation of laws.

The court was also prayed to restrain the respondent custom officials from releasing any stock of mild steel from customs and to restrain PSQCA from issuing any temporary release certificate addressed to the Custom authorities.

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