In a bid to ensure fair and effective resolution of customs-related appeals, Finance Bill 2023-24 has proposed to establish a special bench. The order states that any appeal filed against an appellate or quasi-judicial order passed by the Chief Collector of Customs, under the provisions of the Customs Act and the corresponding rules, will be heard by this special bench.

According to the proposal, the special bench will consist of one technical member and one judicial member, bringing together expertise from both technical and legal backgrounds. This composition aims to provide a balanced and comprehensive approach to the resolution of customs appeals, considering both the technical intricacies and legal aspects involved in these matters.

The establishment of this special bench reflects the commitment of the authorities to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the appellate process in customs-related cases. By ensuring the presence of members with specialized knowledge in both technical and legal domains, the order aims to facilitate well-informed and impartial decisions.

The proposal recognizes the complexities and nuances associated with customs matters. It acknowledges that a combined technical and legal perspective is crucial in understanding the intricacies of these cases and arriving at just and equitable outcomes.

This new proposal reinforces the principles of transparency and accountability within the customs appellate process. By providing for a specialized bench, it seeks to bolster confidence in the adjudication process, ensuring that appeals are heard by members who possess the necessary expertise to assess the technical merits and legal aspects of the cases.

The government also emphasizes the importance of a fair and impartial hearing, acknowledging the significance of both technical expertise and legal interpretation in reaching sound decisions. It is anticipated that this special bench will streamline the appellate process, promoting consistency, and contributing to the overall efficiency of customs administration.