SHC directs Customs to release consignment imported by M/s Lefers

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) directed Customs officials to release the consignment of ginger and garlic after payment of differential amount on petition filed by M/s Lefers seeking release order of the said goods seized by customs officials due the disputed valuation. On September 12, 2018, a two-member bench, headed by Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi, was hearing the matter. The court also issued notices to the customs officials directing them to file their para-wise comments on next date of hearing. Earlier, counsel for the petitioner stated that it is engaged in the import of garlic of China-origin and customs officials purportedly conducted market inquiries using DVM for determining the customs value of garlic and ginger, the customs value of fresh garlic of China-origin is determined at $1.07 kilograms. He informed that petitioner approached the customs officials for revision of the valuation ruling on the ground, inter alia, of disparity in new crop price in China garlic market and customs value determined in the valuation ruling, the new crop price in China garlic market was between $400 to 500 per MT, there is disparity of $500 MT. He said that customs officials did not decide the petition for revision of valuation ruling yet, instead of filing all supporting documents with the customs authorities in respect of such consignments, again, this request has not been attended to; therefore, petitioner will suffer irreparable loss and injury, if the respondents are not directed to provisionally release the goods of the petitioner. Citing Secretary Revenue Division, Chairman Federal Board of Revenue, Director Directorate General of Valuation, Chief Collector Customs Appraisement East and respondents, he pleaded the court to declare that the transactional value of the fresh ginger imported by the petitioner from China are relevant for the purpose of determining the duties and taxes payable by the petitioner on its imports. He also pleaded the court to direct the respondents to provisionally release the consignments of the petitioner after collection of duties and taxes based on the transactional value of such goods declared by the petitioner and during the pendency of the titled petition, restrain the respondents, their officers, agents, etc from recovering duties and taxes etc.