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Essar Steel Versus The Central Board Of Excise & Customs, New Delhi, & 3 Others

2016 (11) TMI 556 - ANDHRA PRADESH HIGH COURT

Waiver of interest, in terms of Section 61(2) of the Customs Act, 1962 - goods warehoused to public bonded warehouse - auction of goods - Held that: - if the goods had not been auctioned, the petitioner would have had the benefit of the goods and the amount already paid by them would come to nearly 50% of the duty demanded. By making payment of the remaining amount, they could have retained the goods. Today, the payments made by them to the tune of about ₹ 75.00 lakhs, is in addition to th .....

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And Anis, JJ. ORDER ( Per VRS, J ) Aggrieved by the refusal of the respondents to grant a waiver of interest, in terms of Section 61(2) of the Customs Act, 1962, the assessee is before us. 2. Heard Mr. G. Mohan Rao, learned counsel for the petitioner, and Mr. M.V.J.K. Kumar, learned senior standing counsel for Central Excise, Customs and Service Tax, appearing for the respondents. 3. Admittedly, the petitioner imported certain goods during the period 1994-95 and cleared them under bills of entr .....

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7/-, and that the amount realized through the public auction was lesser than that, the Department issued a demand calling upon the petitioner to pay the differential duty amount of ₹ 22,37,699/- together with interest to the tune of ₹ 1,31,40,822/-. 6. After paying the difference in duty to the tune of ₹ 22,37,699/- under protest, the petitioner made an application for waiver of the interest component alone. The request was turned down by the Department, forcing the petitioner .....

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ole or part of any interest payable under this Section in respect of any warehoused goods . 8. What are circumstances of exceptional nature are not indicated in the Act. We do not know whether there are any Board Circulars laying down the guidelines as to how the discretion conferred by the first proviso to Section 61(2) has to be exercised. Therefore, on first principles, it will be clear that such discretion may have to be exercised, in an objective manner. With this first principles in mind, .....

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from Paragraph-12 of the counter affidavit filed by the respondents to the writ petition, it is clear that the petitioner was drawn into a long drawn litigation from 1996, on the question of clearance of goods. The tabulation provided by the respondents themselves in Paragraph-12 of the counter affidavit would show this and, hence, it is extracted as follows: Date of event Particulars 27.06.1996 A show cause notice C.No.IV/29/92/95-T.III dated 27.09.1996 was issued to both the parties demanding .....

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d ₹ 53,83,858/-) and penalty of ₹ 20,00,000/- also imposed. 14.08.1998 Being aggrieved, Essar filed appeal before Commr.(A), Hyderabad. Vide OIA No.06/98(V)CUS dated 14.08.1998 Commr.(A) set aside the order passed by AC, VSP and remanded back for de novo proceedings. Penalty of ₹ 20 lakhs set aside. 15.10.1998 Vide OIO No.73/98 dt.15.10.1998 Asst.Commr., VSP ordered Essar to clear the goods on payment of duty of ₹ 2,26,42,882/- along with interest of ₹ 1,21,05,644/- .....

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. For the quantification of duty and interest. Also directed Essar to clear the goods within one month of the receipt of the order after discharging the duty liabilities. 12.11.1999 Asst.Commr. vide C.No.V/29/92/95 T.III PF VI dt.12.11.1999 quantified the duty amounting to ₹ 1,77,55,557/- interest of ₹ 98,74,693/- and penalty of ₹ 1,000/-. 06.11.2002 Since the full amount was not realized, department issued letter dated 06.11.2002 for recovery of balance amount of duty of ͅ .....

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003 dt.20.03.2003 filed before Hon ble High Court of Andhra Pradesh at Hyderabad, which was admitted by Hon ble High Court. 01.01.2004 CBEC informed Essar to approach the Commissioner of Customs after the pronouncement of judgment by Hon ble High Court. 21.04.2015 Hon ble High Court disposed WP No.4757 of 2003 directing the competent authority to consider and decide M/s. Essar s representation for waiver of interest under Section 61(2) of the Customs Act, 1962. 06.04.2016 Chief Commissioner vide .....

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