SHC allows provisional release of consignment of Syscom International

KARACHI: A divisional bench of High Court of Sindh (SHC) comprising Justice Munib Akhtar and Justice Anwar Hussain on Tuesday disposing off a number of application filed by a petitioner Syscom International allowed provisional release of goods  subject to furnishing bank guarantee of the amount claimed by port operator (KICT) and  shipping company with the Nazir of the SHC. Syscom International filed the petition citing Chief Executives of Karachi International Container Terminal and American President Lines (APL) Limited as  respondents.

Imran Iqbal advocate appearing for the petitioner sought implementation of the order the Special Customs Appellate Tribunal which ordered issuance of delay detention certificate in respect of cartons detained by them over a custom duty controversy.

According to the petitioner, a commercial importer imported different items from China. The items include Steel Badminton Racket, origin China and Qty. 1,300 Kgs and assessment was requested under  PCT heading 9503.0090. The custom officials refused the same on ground that  Badminton Rackets  were made of high modulus Carbon graphite Qty. 4,550 Pcs, Net wt. approx. 1,300 Kgs, Brand Yonex, origin Japan. It was observed that Badminton Racket of carbon graphite of China origin are assessable @ US$ 12/pieces vide valuation ruling No. 244/2010 dated 05.04.2010 and in the instant case where origin is Japan, 25% loading in view of origin has been effected on the VR of China origin. Whereas, Iron Steel Badminton Racket is assessable on the basis of 90 days evidential data @ US$ 0.50 to 1/piece.

The petitioner challenged the assessment order before custom hierarchy which imposed a redemption fine as well as penalty of rupees 300,000. The petitioner then filed an appeal before the Customs Appellate tribunal which allowed the same and remitted even the penalty. The petitioner moved the custom authorities for issuance of delay detention certificate.

As the same was not implemented, petitioner moved SHC. The petitioner maintains that both the respondent KICT and APL are bound to honor the delay detention certificate and release the goods of petitioner without charging any demurrage or else.

The petitioner also seeks action against both KICT and APL for not complying with the section 14 A (2) of the Customs Act 1969.

As the counsel for petitioner today pressed for release of the consignment against payment of disputed amount , the bench allowed the request  ordering provisional release while the petition will now come up for hearing with identical petitions.

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