SHC seeks comments on petition filed by M/s National Chemicals seeking release of consignment

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) issued notices to customs department and deputy attorney general on petition filed by M/s National Chemicals seeking release of its consignment comprising methyl bromide containing chloropicrin under HS Code 3808.9170.

While the hearing of petition on November 7, 2018, a two-member bench, headed by Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi directed them to make sure to file their comments on next date of hearing.

During the hearing, counsel for the petitioner filed a petition and argued that petitioner imported a consignment of pesticide covered under HS. Code 3808.9170 and not under 2903.3910 as the heading 2903.3910 is for pure substance whereas H.S Code 3808.9170 is for methyl bormide which contains 2% chloropicrin and for many years it is being cleared under 3808.9170 and the only requirement is the certificate from the Secretary Ministry of Climate Change.

He argued that the condition being imposed for the NOC from Ministry of Climate Change is totally irrelevant, the registered agricultural pesticides are dealt under Appendix-B of the Import Policy Order and Agricultural Pesticide Ordinance, 1971 by the Department of Plant Protection, Ministry of National Food Security and Research and there in no condition for compliance of Ministry of Climate Change.

He said that unnecessary harassment is being caused to the petitioner whereby the petitioner’s consignment has been lying at port incurring heavy demurrage.

Citing Collector of Customs Appraisement Port Muhammad Bin Qasim, Secretary Ministry of National Food Security, Secretary Ministry of Climate Change as respondents, importer pleaded the court to declare HS Code methyl bromide containing chloropicrin is classified under H.S Code 3808.9170 and not under H.S Code 2903.3910 as is being claimed by the respondents.

He also pleaded the court to direct the customs officials to release the consignment of the petitioner under HS Code 3808.9170 as was being done in past.