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Streamline Forwarders Versus The Commissioner of Customs, Customs House, The Deputy Commissioner of Customs

2015 (12) TMI 1429 - MADRAS HIGH COURT

Rejection of the renewal application of the Petitioner to renew the Customs Broker Licence - Denial on the ground of partnership dispute - Held that:- When the Petitioner applied for renewal on 8.9.2014, it was not processed by the Respondent Department on the grievance made by one of the erstwhile partners Suresh Kumar Sain. Thereafter, in order to find out the genuineness of the grievance and enquire into the matter, the erstwhile partners, P.Manikandan, Amit Manchanda, Suresh Kumar Sain, Prad .....

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e said partnership deed dated 2.4.2012, the resignation letters dated 31.3.2012 and the statements were sent to the Forensic Department for expert opinion.

After analysis, the Forensic Department submitted a report dated 26.3.2015, opining that the signatures in question have been imitated and differ significantly from the standard in the handwriting characteristics and there was forgery of signatures. On the other hand, the Petitioner failed to disprove the forgery and the misconduct .....

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l application of the Petitioner was rejected and there is no illegality or infirmity in the impugned order. - Decided against Appellant. - WP. No. 14936 of 2015 MP. No. 2 of 2015 - Dated:- 14-12-2015 - R. Mahadevan, J. For the Petitioner : Mr. D. Ravichander For the Respondents : Mr. K. Mohanamurali, SCCG ORDER This Writ Petition has been filed against the order dated 29.04.2015 of the 1st Respondent, rejecting the renewal application of the Petitioner to renew the Customs Broker Licence. 2. The .....

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inducted into the firm and thereafter, on 18.2.2000 all other partners, except the Petitioner and Manikandan, have retired from the firm. Thereafter, the partnership was reconstituted by inducting Suresh Kumar Sain, Pradeep Kumar Sain and Amit Manchanda and then, one more partner S.Balachandran. Thereafter, all the partners went out of the firm and finally the Managing Partner of the firm and her husband were running the firm as Partners. All the above said reconstitutions were duly informed to .....

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the Petitioner paid a further sum of ₹ 50,000/- and submitted solvency certificate to the tune of ₹ 5,00,000/- and again, paid another sum of ₹ 4,50,000/- on 5.12.2014. Later, the Petitioner came to know that on the grievance made by one of the erstwhile partners, the licence was not processed. Then, on further representation of the Petitioner, the 1st Respondent renewed the licence for three months upto 29.3.2015. Thereafter, the Petitioner made representations dated 17.2.201 .....

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fidavit, wherein it is averred as follows:- It is the bounden duty of the 1st Respondent to verify the documents submitted by the Petitioner, in order to take a decision under Regulation 9(2) of CBLR 2013. Statements were recorded from Srividhya Priya, S.Balachandran, Suresh Kumar Sain, P.Manikandan and Amit Manchanda and no statement was recorded from Pradeep Kumar Sain. A summon dated 30.12.2014 was issued to the Managing Partner of the Petitioner firm. On verification, the partnership deed da .....

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partnership dispute is not correct. Therefore, this Writ Petition is liable to be dismissed. 4. The learned counsel for the Petitioner contended that the 1st Respondent has no jurisdiction to reject the licence on the ground of disputes on partnership and if at all the erstwhile partner has some grievance, his remedy is to approach the civil court and the said person never approached the civil court and gave a complaint to the Respondents and that the power given under the statue to grant licenc .....

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y found in the partnership deed dated 2.4.2012, which would amount to misconduct and prayed for dismissal of this Writ Petition. 6. This court heard and considered the submissions made by the learned counsel on either side and also perused the materials placed on record. 7. At the outset, before adverting to the merits and demerits of the case, it is absolutely necessary to point out that while admitting this Writ Petition, after hearing both sides, since there was a partnership dispute raised b .....

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why the impleading petition has been withdrawn. Hence, the Petitioner deserves no consideration. 8. The main ground, on which the learned counsel for the Petitioner has assailed the impugned order, is that renewal of licence cannot be denied on the ground of partnership dispute and the 1st Respondent is not empowered to enquire into the partnership dispute. On the other hand, it is the case of the Respondents that the renewal application of licence was rejected on the ground of misconduct and f .....

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ound to be satisfactory with reference, inter alia, to the obligations specified in this regulation including the absence of instances of any complaints of misconduct. 10. According to the Petitioner, after various reconstitutions, only the Managing Partner and her husband were running the Firm as Partners, by partnership deed dated 2.4.2012, by deleting the erstwhile partners, viz. Manikandan, Suresh Kumar Sain, Pradeep Kumar sain and Amit Manchanda from the partnership. The said change in cons .....

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were recorded on 29.12.2014, 30.12.2014 and 9.1.2015. All the erstwhile partners, in their respective statements, have categorically stated that they are not aware of the reconstituted partnership deed dated 2.4.2012 and the signatures contained in the said reconstituted partnership deed and their resignation letters dated 31.3.2012 were forged. Hence, on the suspicion that their signatures were forged, the said partnership deed dated 2.4.2012, the resignation letters dated 31.3.2012 and the sta .....

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