KARACHI: The High Court of Sindh has ordered the Nazir of the court to release an amount equivalent of Rs20 million to the Customs authorities. This amount had been deposited with the Nazir by the importers as the differential amount against provisional assessment.

The Customs had approached the Court that the adjudication proceedings stood decided and the differential amount deposited with the Nazir should be released. The Court accepted the application.

This amount was deposited by a number of importers who were dissatisfied with the Customs Valuation guidelines and had approached the high court.

High Court dismissed 23 such applications and advised the appellants to go through the proper hierarchy of legal forums.

The High Court noted that the cases pertaining to assessment and valuation of import consignments would be assessed in terms of Section 25 of the Customs Act, 1969 by the Customs authorities through appealable assessment order by following sequential method providing an opportunity of being heard to the importers/petitioners.

The Court has provided this opportunity to importers/petitioners that if they are still aggrieved from such assessment order.

The judiciary has seemingly changed its mood and the misuse of certain sections and provisions of the law are seriously discouraged.

An official told Customnews.pk that judiciary was now quite logical and the unscrupulous elements are discouraged to take undue benefit of certain sections and provisions of law including Section 191 of the Customs Act.

It was a practice that importers and agents whenever faced any contravention of FIR, they approached the High Court under Section 191 and availed stays or even quashing of FIRs.

However, the adjudication as per the directives of the High court decided the cases. None of the importer filed any appeal.

These importers included M/s Fair Marketing Pakistan, A.A. Foods, Matto Sons, Hina Intizer, Sabrina Abdul Khan, M/s Talha International & Others, Muhammad Zakir Ali, Abdullah Impex, M/S Shama Communication, lmran Rafiq, Dany Technologies & Others, Shabrina Abdul Khaliq, M/s Chick Solutions, M/s AGN Computer, M/S Ghufran Industries, M/s International Petrochemical, Jahanzaib Ali, Muzamil Qasir, M/s Shahzad Munawar, M/s Muhammad Zakir Ali, Abdullah Impex and others.

Collector Appraisement Mohammad Saleem has been the driving force behind such a record performance. Under his leadership, the Customs prosecution was strengthened and the pending cases were completed in a good pace. Mohammad Saleem prime achievement is streamlining of pat 90-days data, which had been corrupted and under-invoicing to the tune of billions of rupees was eliminated.

Additional Collector Naeem Akhtar, Assistant Collector Mehvish Shah, Masooda Siraj Advocate and staff Anwar hussain extended all their cooperation and energies in this regard.