KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) has directed customs officials to release the consignment comprising black pepper on bank guarantee on a constitutional petition filed by M/s AQTRA against enhancement of valuation from US$ 1.00 per kg to US$ 2.30 per kg.
On 25 June 2020 while the hearing of petition, a two-member bench also directed customs officials to submit their para wise comments on next date of hearing.
During the hearing, counsel for the petitioner submitted that petitioner is seriously aggrieved and highly prejudiced by the actions of the respondents, whereby the respondents are assessing the imported consignment of the black pepper, duty and taxes on the basis of the valuation ruling no 1350/2019 issued by director of Customs Valuation.
He further submitted that in accordance with the customs act, 1969 and value of the impugned goods is assessed in accordance with the provisions of section 25 of 25A of the customs act, 1969, as relevant to the present context, the assessment of the black pepper was carried out as per the previously goods was cleared on the basis on previous valuation ruling 1047/2017 @US$ 1.00 kg available with customs.
He said that director Valuation issued valuation ruling no 1350 that the impugned valuation ruling enhancing 100% value @ US$ 2.30 per kg stipulates the value of the basis of the values of the black pepper as stated in the China origin through under the so called.
As per preamble that they kept on board stakeholders (on the other hand the directorate have not given weight submitted by Pakistan Kiryana Association). It is categorically contended that such a concept of deriving values without keeping in view quality of goods by applying an arbitrary discount quotient however substantial it may be is not contemplated statutorily and thus alien to the valuation related customs legislation and ultra-virus the schematic and sequential arrangement of the section 25 of the customs act, 1969.
Citing chairman FBR, the collector of Customs Appraisement West/PMBQ and others as respondents, petitioner pleaded the court to declare that act of the respondents is illegal, mala fide and arbitrary.