SHC summons entire record of auction, number of consignments released earlier

KARACHI: A customs appellate bench of High Court of Sindh headed by Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi on Tuesday summoned entire record of auction and details about release of identical consignments in past.

The bench was hearing a petition filed by one Shahid Mehmood an auction purchaser who purchased a consignment of fresh apples in an open auction. The respondents including customs and plant protection demanded later refused to release the consignment as plant protection department objected on ground that import permit was not available.

The petitioner through Franklin Law Associates challenged the non-release on ground that they are not the importers and rather are auction purchaser. A counsel appearing for the law firm submitted that similar consignments have been released by the respondents but petitioner was being discriminated. The department has obtained two reports from PCSIR and the consignment has been declared fit for human consumption. In view of the laboratory reports, detaining the consignment could not be justified, the consul submitted.

The bench observed that formalities and objections now raised may have been resorted prior to public auction. The bench then asked the respondent DC Auction and MCC East officials concerned to bring in entire record of auction proceedings besides furnishing details of similar consignments released earlier by July 10, the next date of hearing in the case.

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