Banglore Customs, Excise and Taxes Court (CESTAT) Appeal Tribunal overturned the cancellation of the customs broker’s license as the review and investigation is still pending. Classes.
The appellant, M / s Mercantile & Marine Services, is a licensed customs broker. A baggage claim was filed by Mr. Althaf Moosan Mukri and based on intelligence, DRI searched the baggage and recovered 14,763.3g of gold. Statement of Sh. Biju V. Joy, holder of the appellant’s G-Card has been recorded. The holder of said G-Card agreed to invest Rs.35 lakhs in the seized gold. On the basis of the statement of offense No. 17/2021 received from the DRI, the applicant was suspended.
The appellants argued that the challenged order issued alleging a violation of CBLR Rules 10 (d) and 10 (e), 2018 is not sustainable; the contested ordinance takes harsh and coercive action like the suspension of a business license to operate and as a result large numbers of people and their livelihoods are affected.
On the other hand, the Department maintains that smuggling gold is a serious offense and requires the strictest possible measures.
Judicial Member’s Coram, CSMohanty, and Technical Member, P. Anjani Kumar noted that the appellants themselves have not been clearly established to the point of requiring the suspension of the customs broker’s license. The ministry maintains that the matter is still under review and investigation by the ministry.
The court concluded that in the circumstances, the suspension of the appellant’s license was not justified. In addition, in this case, it was reported that the SNA under the CBLR has been issued. Upon completion of the investigation and review, the Department is free to take appropriate action. In view of the above, we are of the opinion that the suspension of the license is not necessary. Therefore, said suspension must be revoked and we are doing so. At the same time, we specify that this order must in no case stand in the way of the action deemed appropriate which may be taken by the Ministry at the end of the proceedings against the appellant.
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