Collector appeals directs adjudication to apply penal clauses with judicious mind

KARACHI: The collector of customs (Appeals) has directed the adjudication to apply penal clauses with a judicious mind and unbiased attitude and not as a matter of routine or based on the personal whims of the person delivering the same.
In the case of M/s Indus Corporation, the collector appeals while rejecting the charges framed the customs officers against the company said that penal provisions are enacted for application after due deliberations and that is the very reason that the appellate fora are created since one stroke of the hammer does not always deliver justice. “The basic reason for creation of such fora is to give relief, where due, after application of an independent and judicious mind and without any bias,” the collector appeals observed.
The details of the case revealed that customs officials imposed fine and penalty under Section 32 of the Customs Act, 1969 on misdeclaration but the collector appeals directed the officers otherwise. “The confiscation of goods and imposition of redemption fine and penalty in the case has no rationale as no violation of Section 32 has be established,” the collector appeals observed. “Therefore, redemption fine and personal penalty is remitted,” the collector ordered.
However, the order concluded with allowing customs officers to assess the impugned goods under correct Pakistan Customs Tariff (PCT) and in terms of the value indicated in the invoice found inside the container.
The customs officials framed the case for under invoicing / gross misdeclaration of value by 1700 percent, invoice found on goods was $21,600 while declared /processed invoice was $1,200. The excess value was $20,400 that was 1700 percent excess and such misdeclaration attracts Section 32(A) of the Customs Act, 1969 further read with Section 156(I) [14A] of the Act. The misdeclaration detected on import of methoxy benzyl ethyl ether.

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