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SHC seeks reply on petition filed by clearing agents against lodging FIR

SHC seeks reply on petition filed by clearing agents against lodging FIR

KARACHI: The Sindh High Court (SHC) issued notices to the customs officials and directed them to file their para wise comments on a constitutional petition filed by Clearing agent namely Fahad Mirza against lodging first information report (FIR).

On 13 February 2020 a two-member bench, headed by Justice Aqeel Ahmed Abbasi was hearing the matter.

During the hearing, counsel for the petitioner is working as a clearing agent for last 10 years for a clearing agent known as People Service Corporation, the clearing agency is owned by one Sarwat Hussain who is the proprietor but mostly reside abroad and has left the petitioner as incharge to look after day to day work of the clearing agent.

He submits that at different interval two different passengers contacted the petitioner for clearance of their consignment comprising of baggage, as per information of the petitioner, the baggage was taken over by the staff of Collector of Customs Appraisement of Preventive at unaccompanied baggage section and subjected to examination without seeking any declaration from both the passengers, the containers were forcibly open and it is alleged the different goods were recovered from containers.

Petitioner said that for the reasons best known to the customs officials the passports of the passengers were handed over to them and both the containers were seized declaration was sought, no examination/ assessment report was prepared nor the baggage, declaration form filed by each passenger was scrutinized, yet both the containers were seized and a joint FIR or two different incidents was lodged.

Counsel stated that although the petitioner did not act as a clearing agent in the matter nor filed baggage declaration form nor made any attempt to clear both the consignments, yet the petitioner was named in the FIR with mala fide intentions and ulterior motives.

Citing chairman FBR, Collector of Customs Appraisement, Superintendent Preventive Services, Unaccompanied Baggage and others as respondents, petitioner pleaded the court may declare that petitioner has been wrongly roped in and petitioner has not committed any violation of customs act, 1969.

He further pleaded the court may set aside FIR lodged against the petitioner.