KARACHI: A division bench of the Sindh High Court (SHC) directed customs officials to file their respective para wise comments on constitutional petitions filed by several importers against auctions of more than 50 imported vans seized by the customs department.
On 26 January 2021, during the hearing, counsel for the petitioner stated that petitioners are importers of vehicles Toyota Probox Van falling under the category of vans which in terms of appendix-E of IPO are importable in old and used condition by the Pakistani nationals, subject to age restriction of not older than 5 years.
He further argued that before the arrival of the vehicles of the importers the identical vehicles of more than 50 passengers were detained by raising objection as to whether the vehicles imported by those passengers are van or car and if those are cars then age restriction comes down to 3 years.
Counsel further argued that since the vehicles of other passengers/ importers have already been detained in spite of payment of customs duty and taxes, the petitioners preferred not to file the goods declaration till the decision on the objection raised by the customs authorities.
Counsel said that recently the petitioners came to know that customs authorities put the vehicles of the petitioner in auction, therefore, importers requested the customs authorities to immediately withhold the auction proceeding in respect of the vehicles of the petitioners and under the mentioned circumstances the petitioners have no adequate and efficacious remedy except to approach this court.
Citing chairman FBR, collector of Customs Appraisement West and assistant collector of Customs Appraisement Auction and others as respondents, petitioners pleaded the court may declare that the respondents’ actions of detention of the vehicles are unlawful ad auction of the same is illegal.