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Shri Rajesh Lapang, Shri Samir Ghosh, Shri Shyam Sundar Mondal Versus Commr. of Customs (Prev.) , Shillong

2017 (12) TMI 401 - CESTAT KOLKATA

Smuggling - betel nuts - the goods found on the trucks were of foreign origin, in the light of the prevailing trend of smuggling of betel nuts of foreign origin and in view of the fact that there was no supporting documents letter,invoice, challans import documents etc, the goods were confiscated - Held that: - There is absolutely nothing on record to even remotely suggest that such goods are of foreign origin. Betel nuts is also not a commodity notified under Section 123 of the Customs Act, 196 .....

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ruli Sandik, Jay Jayram Yadav, Jagarnath Yadav Versus Commissioner of Customs (Preventive) , Shillong [2016 (9) TMI 275 - CESTAT KOLKATA]. - Appeal allowed - decided in favor of appellant. - Customs Appeal Nos. C/75050,75051,75052/2017 - Order No. F/O 78332-334/2017 - Dated:- 1-12-2017 - Satish Chandra, President And Shri V. Padmanabhan, Member (Technical) Sri Nihar Dasgupta, Advocate for the Appellant Sri S.N. Mitra, A.C. (A.R.) for the Respondent ORDER Per Shri V. Padmanabhan These appeals .....

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claimed ownership of the seized vehicles but they disassociated themselves from the goods found on the vehicles. One Shri Rajesh Lapang of M/s. Lapang Eco Products, Byrenihat, Meghalaya claimed ownership of the seized goods. In his statement, he stated that the goods were loaded in the trucks for despatch to Silliguri and that trucks were arranged by his Manager, Shri Sanjib Dhar. He also submitted that he was not in possession of NOC from the Department of Sales Tax, Govt. of Meghalaya for tra .....

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at the godown was given on rent to one Shri OM Prakash Gupta who was not traceable. 3. After conclusion of investigation, the Department issued show cause notice and vide the impugned order, confiscated the betel nuts found in the two trucks by taking the view that the goods found on the trucks were of foreign origin, in the light of the prevailing trend of smuggling of betel nuts of foreign origin and in view of the fact that there was no supporting documents letter,invoice, challans import doc .....

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s have been filed by Shri Rajesh Lapang as well as the owner of the two vehicles. 5. With the above background, we heard Shri N. Dasgupta, Advocate and Shri S.N. Mitra, A.C. (A.R.) for the parties. 6. The Ld. Counsel for the appellants drew our attention to the three invoices No.4,5 & 6 dated-13/01/2016, said to be issued by M/s. Lapng Eco Products in favour of the buyers of the Supari-M/s. Rafique Traders, Purnia, Bihar. He claimed these invoices were in respect of the goods seized. He furt .....

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t the impugned order may be set aside. 7. The Ld. D.R. justified the impugned order. He submitted that in the absence of any documentary support and the recent trend of smuggling of betel nuts of foreign origin by customers, the seized goods are liable for confiscation. 8. We have heard both sides and perused the record. The Customs officers intercepted two trucks which were found to carry dry betel nuts but the drivers of the vehicles were not in possession of any documents explaining the origi .....

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that no further NOC was issued in his favour. 9. The Adjudicating Authority has held that the seized goods are liable for confiscation as they are found to be of foreign origin in the light of the recent trend of smuggling of Dry Betel Nuts as evidence by several seizures made by the Customs Department.Other than such a view expressed, we find that Customs Department has not managed to recover any evidence regarding the origin of the seized goods. There is absolutely nothing on record to even re .....

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nd movements of such goods cannot be made the basis for confiscation under Customs Act, 1962. 10. It is observed that a similar case came up before the Tribunal in the case of Muruli Sandik, Jay Jayram Yadav & Jagannath Yadav (Appeal Nos. 75661,75662 & 75663/2016) which was decided by final order No.A/75877-75879/2016 dated-18/08/2016 in which the Tribunal observed that : 4. The core issue to be decided in the present appeals is whether the impugned goods were of foreign origin and were .....

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ds were sent by him to M/s. RK Enterprises, who has also confirmed having placed the order therefor. M/s. Bahubali Attractions Pvt. Ltd. has accepted having supplied the goods to Shri Maqsood Alam and has also claimed along with the evidence of cash memos that they had bought almost 46 tons of betel nuts under various cash memos (on payment including VAT) from two cooperative societies, which in turn had bought the goods from NCCF and the cooperative societies have mentioned the invoice numbers .....

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arch, 2008, which in turn were sold by the cooperative societies in the month of April, 2008 and were further sold by M/s. Bahubali Attractions Pvt. Ltd. in the month of May, 2008 and it is not legally valid to treat the opinions of the personnel of the cooperative societies/NCCF based on mere visual examination of the impugned goods after so many months as a sustainable legal evidence, more so because they sell betel-nuts to various customers and cannot be reasonably expected to remember whethe .....

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