KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) directed customs officials that request of the petitioner for provisional release of the consignment by securing disputed amount of duty and taxes in the shape of pay order/ bank guarantee before the Collectorate concerned, shall be considered in accordance with law. The petition was filed by M/s Noor Traders against detention of consignment of imported toilet soaps by customs officials due to alleged disputed valuation.
On February 11, 2019, while hearing the petition, a two-member bench, headed by Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi issued pre-admission notices to the customs officials and deputy attorney general and directed them to file their comprehensive para-wise comments on next date of hearing.
During the hearing, counsel for the petitioner stated in his petition that petitioner imported consignment at the rate of US$ 1/kg from Germany inclusive the cost of packaging as evident from the commercial invoice which is covered under Valuation Ruling 863 of 2016.
He further submitted that officials of the customs department assessed the consignment on the basis of gross weight thereof, i.e. by including the weight of the packaging unlawfully.
Citing Chairman Federal Board of Revenue, Collector of Customs Appraisement East and DG Valuation as respondents, petitioner pleaded the court may declare that the assessment of the soaps in packing imported by the petitioner under valuation ruling 863/2016 is to be carried out on the basis of the net content weight without including the weight of the packaging, as envisaged under section 25 (2) (b) (iii) of the Customs Act, 1969.
He also pleaded the court may direct them to release his consignment immediately on the basis of the declaration filed by the petitioner and restrain them from taking any coercive action against the petitioner till final order in this petition.