KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) issued notices to the customs department and deputy attorney on a constitutional petition filed M/s S.A. Brothers and M/s Mian Corporation seeking exemption of sales on import of footwear.
On April 17, 2019, a two member bench, headed by Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi also directed them to file their respective para-wise comments on next date of hearing.
During the hearing, counsel for the petitioner stated that petitioners are engaged in the lawful business of footwear made of leather or artificial leather from various sources around the world including China and imported two consignments and they are entitled to benefit of concession/ exemption of sales tax their imports.
He further submitted that respondents were extending the benefit of the notification, however, the respondents have stopped the exemption after the issuance of amending SRO 1070(I)/2017 dated 23/01/2017.
He argued that it is clear from the plain language of said SRO that the footwear of artificial leather is part and parcel of the leather sector, which is one of the five sectors, which enjoys benefit of exemption of sales tax on their imports. Therefore, the aforesaid acts of the respondents are nothing but glaring violation of the fundamental rights guaranteed under the Constitution.
Citing secretary Revenue Division, Collector of Customs Port Qasim and Deputy Collector of Customs Port Qasim as respondents, petitioner pleaded the court to declare that the harassment by the respondents through the encashment of bank guarantees/pay orders, is illegal, void and of no legal effect.
Petitioner further pleaded to restrain the respondents from taking any coercive action including encashment of pay orders/bank guarantees and blocking of the NTN/ user-ID of the petitioners or create any hurdles for release of the up-coming with concession/ exemption of sales tax in terms of Sr. No 4 of Table-II to SRO 1125(1)/2011 read with SRO 1070(1)/2017 and SRO 777(1)/2018.