M/s V.N Lakhani & Co. clarifies its position in M/s Googan Steel Traders case

KARACHI: Clearing Agent M/s V.N. Lakhani & Co., has criticized Directorate of Customs Intelligence & Investigation, Karachi for naming them as a conniver in a case whereby M/s Googan Steel Traders is facing legal proceedings for illegal removal of imported goods from bonded warehouse.

In a statement issued, M/s V.N Lakhani & Co., said that the job of the clearing agent is to remove the goods from port and hand over to the Customs at their licensed bonded warehouse, and that’s where their involvement ends. “The naming of clearing agent as a conniver in the FIR is incomprehensible”.

“As Customs records are evident, all the goods were handed over to customs as per the IB Goods Declaration, complete in terms of quantity, value etc,” the statement added.

It said Customs authorities do not have complete information of the case, and is just being trigger-happy to lodge FIRs and exhibit performances.

Clearing Agent clarified the samples had been sent to A.Q. Khan Laboratory as per the Collectorate’s records, and been received by the Collectorate. Since the Collecorate had refused to finalize the GD as per test reports.

“The importer had filed a complaint against the Collectorate with the Federal Tax Ombudsman, whereby FTO recommended for FBR to direct Collector MCC Port Muhammad Bin Qasim to finalize the assessment in respect of three GDs bearing no. 27806, 30916 and 35205 by pursuing the matter of pending test report with the relevant institution; reconcile the case of disputed GDs as proposed by the Department with reference to application submitted to Collector MCC Port Muhammad Bin Qasim, Karachi; advise the Directorate of Reforms and Automation to examine business processes so that ‘option to the importer to file review after finalization of provisional assessment’ is available under the WeBOC software as a trade facilitation measure”.

“Moreover, two cases at the High Court of Sindh, at Karachi, were filed by Googan Steel Traders against the Collectorate for delaying assessment on the basis of test reports; hence the charges applied on the importer are just mechanical in nature and way to exhibit performances for rewards and promotions”.

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