KARACHI: An appellate bench of High Court of Sindh (SHC) yesterday disposed of dozens of identical petitions filed by tyre importers and Tyre Importers Association while ordering the department to release consignments provisionally.
The bench comprising Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi and Justice Abdul Malik Gaddi earlier heard the sides at length. The ADC’s and DC’s of East and West Model Customs Collectorate were in attendance today.
The petitions were filed as the customs detained the consignment disputing the PCT heading under which the importers sought clearance of their consignments which do not attract Regulatory Duty (RD) while custom authorities were applying another PCT which includes RD. [the_ad id=”31605″] The other issue was the direct notices raising demand for paying duties at enhanced rate.
The counsel from Franklin Law Associates appearing for a number of petitioners submitted that they filed documents as per parameters set by the Chief Collector and therefore detention is illegal. Healso questioned the legality of the direct demand notice issues without any adjudication.
The counsel for respondent custom officials submitted that the consignment would be released under section 83 (b) of the Customs Act 1969 after securing fine and penalty besides customs duty etc. The court disagreed and said when HC has interfered, the provisional release shall be under section 81 of the Customs Act.
The bench however said that petitioner s will give an undertaking that if any violation is found they will be liable to pay the fine and penalty but with the condition that their right of appeal has exhausted. The bench with the above observation while suspending impugned demand notices and restraining Pakistan Customs from any adverse action disposed of the petitions ordering provisional release.