KARACHI: After Customs Today news got viral on social media about COVID-19 patients in National Bank of Pakistan Customs House branch, the management of National Bank of Pakistan has decided to authorize National Bank of Pakistan Nadir House branch to collect customs duty.
A notification issued stated that National Bank of Pakistan has authorized Nadir House branch for WeBOC based customs duties collection with effect from Monday May 11, 2020 as desired by customs authorities and other stakeholders. For the moment, Nadir House will only accept duties collection while PD and token payments will not be accepted there.
Three employees of NBP Customs House Branch tested positive for Covid-19 and the branch remained closed on 27th April 2020 for collection of duties and taxes. NBP President was alerted several times by different bodies of traders and customs agents including KCAA and FPCCI, but he did not implement social distancing measures at the branch. Customs Today also covered this issue and reported about health risk of large number of gatherings outside and inside the branch amid spread of Coronavirus in the Customs House but NBP President Arif Usmani did not pay any heed to the timely reporting and warning by Customs Today.
Customs Today reported early 9am on 22 April about huge rush of customs officials, agents and public at Customs House Karachi and inside the NBP Customs House Branch even during Covid-19 disaster, putting lives of the people at risk. After directives issued by the high-ups and the govt departments, attendance at Customs House Karachi should have been kept minimal for 4-6 weeks to avoid further spread of Coronavirus among Customs officials, traders, agents and bank employees who are lifeline of the economic activity in the country