The Madras High Court directed the respondent authority to release the goods after assessing and collecting the customs duty and other charges provisionally within a period of three weeks.
The petitioners, M/s.Black Gold Technologies had imported consignments of “Used Rubber Tyre Cut in Two Pieces”. According to the petitioners, the said goods are freely importable and they are meant for manufacturing “rubber crumbs” to be eventually used for road laying.
The respondent authority after examination came to the conclusion that the goods have been misdeclared. Though they had been declared as used tyres with one cut in bead wire, a random examination of the goods revealed that there was no cut in the bead wires.
Therefore, it was referred to SIIB for detailed examination for import assessment. As per the examination report of the said officers, the cargo was found to be used rubber tyres in pressed bales. But there was no cut in the bead wires. Though import of used tyres with one cut in the bead wire is free, import of used rubber tyres is restricted.
Hence, on the reasonable belief that the importer has mis-declared the cargo in order to circumvent the import restriction imposed by the extant Foreign Trade Policy, the entire cargo was seized for further investigation under the Customs Act, 1962.
Following such seizure, the petitioners made a request for provisional release in terms of Section 110A of the Customs Act, 1962. Since the request was not complied with, these writ petitions came to be filed.
The respondent contended that since the goods also constitute a hazardous waste, prayer for provisional release is also not maintainable.
The single judge bench of Justice G.R. Swaminathan directed the respondents to assess and permit the provisional release of the goods in question upon payment of applicable duties of customs subject however to the eventual adjudication.
The court further said that the respondents shall release the goods after assessing and collecting the customs duty and other charges provisionally within a period of three weeks from the date of receipt of a copy of this order.Subscribe Taxscan AdFree to view the Judgment