Notices issued in controversy about packing material

KARACHI: A division bench of High Court of Sindh (SHC) comprising Justice Irfan Sadaat Khan and Justice Muhammad Humayun Khan on Tuesday issued notices to Secretary, Revenue Division, Chief Collector of Customs, Appraisement South, East and West for Nov 30 in two identical petitions filed by Muhammad Farooq, importer of Candies and another by an importer of canned mushrooms.

Zain Jatoi advocate appearing for the petitioner questioned the inclusion of weight of packaging material into total weight of the consignment and determination of custom value. The counsel maintained that since year 2009, respondents have needlessly created a controversy that packing and packing  material and labor costs as part of the value of the goods being assessed. This practice was being done under the garb of Section 25, sub section 2 (ii) and (iii) of the Customs Act 1969, Jatoi advocate maintained.

He impugned a letter dated 27-5-2016 written by Collector East, Ashhad Jawwad addressed to Mukarram Jah, Collector Customs, MCC Port Muhammad Bin Qasim and Fareed Iqbal Qureshi. The letter contained details about the four consignments, 2 each dealt by MCC, East and West. It was said upon re-examination of the consignment at PICT minor difference was found between the declared weight and weight found which comes to around 3 tons.

The counsel also referred to a judgment by the Lahore High Court in a petition 3000/2014 and held that Valuation Ruling applies  on net weight basis i.e excluding the essential packaging weight.

The bench after hearing initial arguments ordered issuance of notices to the respondents as well as Deputy Attorney General for Pakistan for Nov 30.

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