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M/s Jay Agro Organics Ltd. Versus Commissioner of Customs, Ahmedabad

Penalty u/s 114A - allegation of mis-declaring that export product - availing the benefit of export promotion scheme viz. Vishesh Krish & Gram Upaj Yojana Scheme (VKGUY) - export of Oil Cake Meal - Held that:- There is no doubt that in the present proceedings, oil was extracted by a combination of both by expelling process and by solvent extraction. There was thus a bonafide opinion on the part of the Appellant, based on their understanding, that when both the processes of expelling and solvent .....

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aration intentionally made to evade customs duty. The ratio of the above law laid down by Hon’ble Apex Court will be applicable to the present facts & circumstances as the Appellant was holding a bonafide belief that so long as majority of the oil is extracted by expelling process, the resultant meal will continue to be classified as expeller variety of oil cake meal. In view of the above observations and settled proposition of law, there was no justification for imposing penalty upon the Appell .....

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7; 25 lakhs is imposed upon the Appellant under Section 114AA of the Customs Act, 1962. 2. Shri J.C. Patel, learned Advocate appearing on behalf of the Appellant argued that the Appellant was issued a show cause notice for imposing penalty for wrongly availing the benefit of export promotion scheme viz. Vishesh Krish & Gram Upaj Yojana Scheme (VKGUY) for mis-declaring that export product which has been declared as Oil Cake Meal, expeller variety when actually the oil cake meal was made by so .....

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solvent extraction method and that when 90% oil is recovered by expelling then the oil cake meal of castor will remain classifiable under 23069017 of the ITC policy as expeller variety. That if 100% of the oil is extracted with the help of solvent extraction then only such oil cake meal will be classified as solvent extracted variety of meal. In view of the above fact, it was argued by the learned Advocate that the Appellant had a bonafide belief that oil cake meal of castor exported by them was .....

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Entry under a bonafide belief will not amount to mis-declaration. It was his case that penalty is not imposable under Section 114AA of the Customs Act, 1962. 3. Shri G.P. Thomas, Authorised Representative for the Revenue raised a preliminary objection that this case involves classification of the product oil cake meal and should be decided by Division Bench. In this regard, it is observed from the case records that this appeal was initially put up before DB on 03.06.2015 and DB sitting at Ahmeda .....

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opting solvent extraction then the resultant cake meal exported will not be expeller variety which has been deliberately mis-declared by the Appellant in shipping bill in order to get the benefit of VKGUY. The learned Authorised Representative strongly defended the order passed by the Adjudicating authority. It was also argued that there is no evidence that 100% oil directly from the seed can be recovered by solvent extraction method. 4. As a counter to the above argument of the Authorised Repre .....

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Penalty for use of false or incorrect material. If a person knowingly or intentionally makes, signs or uses, or causes to be made, signed or used, any declaration, statement or document which is false or incorrect in any material particular, in the transaction of any business for the purposes of this Act, shall be liable to a penalty not exceeding five times the value of the goods. 6. On a plain reading of the above Section, it is conveyed that for a penalty to be imposed under this section, th .....

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er variety. It is the case of the Appellant that 100% oil extraction from oil seed is not possible by physical expression of seeds. That if Revenue s argument is believed that no oil cake meal will be of expeller quality. It was also argued on behalf of the Appellant that when 100% Oil is extracted from the oil seeds by solvent extraction, then only oil cake meal will be called solvent extracted meal. That having this interpretation in mind, the Appellant raised the ground of bonafide belief bef .....

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% oil from the castor seeds, the remnant oil in the oil cake is removed by solvent extraction process by spraying a solvent namely hexane on the oil cake. These facts are not in dispute as these are also narrated in Para 8 of the SCN. 7. Para 8 of the show cause notice dt.27.06.2014 also record similar facts as reproduced below: 8. From the investigation, it is revealed that the Castor Seeds are subjected to crushing in expeller or obtaining Castor Oil, which is further subjected to Hydrogenatio .....

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by expelling process and by solvent extraction. There was thus a bonafide opinion on the part of the Appellant, based on their understanding, that when both the processes of expelling and solvent extraction are used then the resultant meal will continue to be called as expeller variety of oil cake meal. Though the reasoning given by the Appellant was not accepted by the Adjudicating authority, while deciding the classification, but it cannot be said that there was a deliberate act of mis-declari .....

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no such requirement of law, for him to have described the goods which were in the form of rolls as jumbo rolls. It was also not necessary for him to describe them as the jumbo colour film as there was no separate heading or sub-heading for jumbo colour film in Chapter 37. Merely because the appellant claimed that it was entitled to exemptions in respect of customs duty under exemption Notification No. 52/86 as amended by 157/88 and because there was a separate exemption notification in respect o .....

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