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2015 (12) TMI 1254 - MADRAS HIGH COURT

2015 (12) TMI 1254 - MADRAS HIGH COURT - 2016 (334) E.L.T. 519 (Mad.) - Auction of goods by the port authorities due to non clearance - Auction done without notice to Assessee - Held that:- Any kind of communication or reply, addressed before or after the notice, does not confer any right on the consignee to seek any legal remedy. Therefore, it is more clear that either the goods should have been cleared soon after the publication of the notice or some steps should have been taken legally by the .....

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herefore, viewed from any angle, the question of non-issuance of notice before the public auction does not arise. Even after paying the customs duty, the petitioner should have been more vigil and strenuous in clearing the goods. - Court does not find that the action of the auctioning the goods of the petitioner suffers from any infirmity. - action of the auctioning the goods of the petitioner suffers from any infirmity - Decided against Assessee. - WP. No. 35585 of 2002 - Dated:- 24-11-2015 - R .....

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red importer and exporter of various goods, under the DGFT, Ministry of Commerce, Government of India. The Petitioner entered into a contract with M/s.United Trading Corporation, Honk Kong for the supply of 6000 pieces of halogen lamps in 12 cartons of China Origin, to the tune of USD 695, to be shipped by AIR. On 26.1.2002, the goods were made from Shanghai to Chennai and the goods arrived at Chennai Airport on 2.2.2002. Since the delivery order was misplaced, there was a delay in processing th .....

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er, the goods were not cleared on the ground that the investigation was going on. Again on 23.5.2002, the Petitioner sent a representation for granting waiver in respect of demurrage incurred. On 23.5.2002, the Bill of Entry was processed and the Petitioner paid ₹ 30,341/- as customs duty and other charges for clearance. However, the goods were not cleared on the ground that the investigation was not completed. b. The 2nd Respondent, by letter dated 14.6.2002 rejecting the request for waiv .....

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notice dated 3.7.2002, calling upon the Respondents to hand over the goods of similar quality and quantity or pay its value besides refund of duty paid to the 1st Respondent with interest and damages. The 2nd Respondent sent a reply dated 19.7.2002, rejecting the said claim and the Petitioner was informed that a notice dated 19.6.2002 was issued, calling upon the Importers to clear the goods, which landed on or before 31.3.2002, failing which goods would be auctioned. The Petitioner was not give .....

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3.5.2002, regarding waiver of demurrage, the same could not be acceded to, as there is no provision in the waiver policy, which was communicated by letter dated 14.6.2002 and further advised the Petitioner to clear the goods to avoid accrual of demurrage. Since the Petitioner did not clear the goods, with the permission of the 1st Respondent, the goods were auctioned and hence, the 2nd Respondent cannot be held responsible for the loss as alleged by the Petitioner. The 2nd Respondent sent a repl .....

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ling which the goods would be auctioned without further notice and this public notice is sufficient notice deemed as the final notice under Section 48 of the Customs Act. Therefore, the Petitioner cannot contend that he has no knowledge and that there was no notice served upon him before auctioning of the goods and hence, there was no need to send any individual notice. c. Though the Petitioner filed Bill of Entry on 2.2.2002 for the total assessable value of ₹ 34,115/- and paid duty of &# .....

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the demurrage charges as applicable shall be collected. In such circumstances, this Writ Petition is liable to dismissed. 4. Heard both sides. 5. The learned counsel for the Petitioner contended that despite the Petitioner filing Bill of Entry, the action of the Respondents in not allowing the Petitioner to clear the goods is arbitrary and unwarranted and that without waiting for the Petitioner to clear the goods, the Respondents auctioned the goods, for which the Petitioner has paid necessary c .....

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lue of such goods imported besides refund of duty paid and hence, prayed for a direction as prayed for in this Writ Petition. 6. The learned senior standing counsel for the 1st Respondent submitted that due to delay on the part of the Petitioner, the Respondents cannot be held responsible and there is no provision in the waiver policy and that as per the provisions of the Customs Act, if the goods are not cleared within 30 days of arrival, the same are liable for auction and that since goods in .....

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the petitioner had imported 6000 pieces of halogen lamps from Shanghai to Chennai and the goods were arrived at Chennai Airport on 2.2.2002. Since there was a delay in clearing the goods and the petitioner was seeking the waiver of demurrage charges, which was declined by the Airports Authority of India, the goods could not be cleared, even after the lapse of 155 days, though the cuosoms duty was paid by the petitioner and hence, the second respondent, by issuing the press notice, auctioned the .....

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irty days after unloading", which reads as under:- "48. Procedure in case of goods not cleared, warehoused or transhipped within 1[thirty days] after unloading. - If any goods brought into India from a place outside India are not cleared for home consumption or warehoused or transhipped 2[within 3[thirty days]] from the date of the unloading thereof at a customs station or within such further time as the proper officer may allow or if the title to any imported goods is relinquished, su .....

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ed to them in the Arms Act, 1959 (54 of 1959). 11. As per the provisions of Section 48, if the imported goods are not cleared within 30 days from the date of unloading at a Customs Station, that can be sold after notice to the importer. 12. It is pointed out by the learned Senior Standing Counsel appearing for the respondents that the goods were not cleared even after the lapse of 155 days from the date of their arrival. It is also pointed out that the petitioner had filed BOE on 2.2.2002 (BOE N .....

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y the respondents. 14. Refuting the contention of the learned counsel for the petitioner, the learned Senior Standing Counsel appearing for the respondents has contended that in the letter, dated 24.6.2002 addressed by the agent of the petitioner to the second respondent, it is stated that they have received the letter from the customs pending cargo section for the disposal of the consignment and therefore, when the petitioner was intimated that if the goods are not cleared as early as possible, .....

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quot;With reference to the above, we wish to inform you that the above said consignment is already completed the custom assessment and we already been made the payment of customs duty. We submitted the Demurrage Waiver requisition letter to your office along with the customs demurrage waiver detention certificate. In this connection, please refer to your letter No:AAM/CARGO/3140/2002/1149-50, dated 14.6.2002 stating that our waiver request is rejected due to no provision in your policy to consid .....

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informed about the disposal of the consignment. 17. Thereafter, the second respondent had issued a 'Press Notice' in a English Daily, viz., "The Hindu", dated 19th June 2002, under the caption, "Notice of Disposal To the Importer for uncleared import consignments". A copy of the same is produced in the typed set of papers. "It is hereby notified to all importers including Govt. Undertakings/Departments and the Banks that as per the Govt. Directions, uncleared imp .....

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If no written submissions with the documents is furnished by the importers within 15 days of this notice, un-cleared cargo will be disposed off as abovesaid and no claim whatsoever in this regard will be entertained thereafter. This may be deemed as a notice in terms of Section 48 of Customs Act, 1962. Kindly note that not acknowledging/replying to the consignee's communication (addressed before or after this notice) by the AAI does not confer any right on the consignee to seek any legal re .....

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