FIR lodged against water filer/RO membrane importers

KARACHI: Directorate of Customs Intelligence & Investigation has lodged an FIR against importers of water filers/RO membranes for evading government revenue through under-declaring the weight and quantity of goods.

An information was received from Director Samina Wajid that Lahore-based importers namely M/s. Kontel Technologies and M/S. Comprehensive Business International are involved in huge evasion of duty and taxes on import of water purification filters / Reverse Osmosis Membranes of US origin supplied by M/s. Hydranautics, USA by concealing the actual transaction value and quantity of the commodity through submission of manipulated and bogus commercial invoices.

Deputy Director Tauseef Ali Gorchani and his team pursued the case.

It was also known that the importing frm M/s. Kontel Technologies  is owned by one Abaid ur Rehman however the firm is being run jointly in association with his son Shakil ur Rehman who also owns business in the name of M/s. Comprehensive Business International.

The aforesaid firms are purported distributors of M/s. Hydranautics, USA and as such have monopolized imports of under-reference commodity for distribution in Pakistan. According to the source the water purification filters / RO membranes were cleared by the said persons at declared / assessed values manifold lower than the actual transaction / invoiced values and mis-declaration of quantities causing a huge loss of revenue to public exchequer.

In order to verify veracity of information the relevant import data of aforesaid firms was scrutinized and 10 such consignments of water purification filters supplied by M/s. Hydranautics. USA were identified to have been imported and cleared during the period 18.04.2013 to 04.06.2016. Five consignments were cleared through MCC, Appraisement (East), Karachi and remaining 05 from MCC, Appraisement (West), Karachi.

Scrutiny of GDs revealed the consignments were cleared on total assessed value of $161,111 equivalent to Rs.19.198 million on total payment of duty and taxes amounting to Rs9,056 million. The prints-out of relevant Bills of Lading and commercial invoices uploaded by the importers for clearance of under-reference goods were retrieved from the system for further verification.

Notices were issued to M/s. Kontel Technologies to provide relevant import documents including contract with the foreign suppliers, original commercial invoices and LCs/proof of payment to the foreign suppliers. In response the importers provided an unsigned copy of purported Distributor Agreement with M/s. Hydranautics, USA for import of under-reference commodity from the said suppliers for local distribution/supply.

Investigations revealed the actual transaction value of the goods to be $3.05 million i.e. Rs317.889 million.

It was also stated that no LCs were involved in the import transactions. The importers failed to produce any proof of payment to the afore-said suppliers against under-reference imports.

Abaid-ur-Rahman of M/s Kontel Technologies and Shakil-ur-Rahman of M/s Comprehensive Business International in collusion with each other and other other associates evaded an amount of Rs139.999 million.

FIR is lodged and investigations are underway.

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