Govt proposes changes in Customs Act
New Delhi: The government on Thursday approved amendments to the Customs Act which will validate show cause notices issued by officials in cases of duty evasion running into thousands of crores.
"Tax evaders will not get benefited at the expense of
exchequer on a mere technical ground... This would provide
certainty in revenue matters by settling pending procedures
before various judicial and quasi judicial authorities,"
Information & Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni told reporters
after a Cabinet meeting.
The Legislative Amendment Bill to amend Section 28 of the
Customs Act 1962 will be introduced in the ensuing monsoon
session of Parliament, she said.
The Amendment would retrospectively recognise specified
Customs officers as "proper officers" for assessment of
Customs duty thereby validating large number of Show cause
Notices that are otherwise rendered invalid as a consequence
of a judgement of the Supreme Court in February.
The SC decision invalidated a large number of show cause
notices involving significant revenue thereby warranting
remedial measures, the Minister said.
The show cause notices were issued by officers of
Directorate General of Revenue Intelligence (DRI)and
Commissionarates of Customs and others. Officers of DRI alone
have issued show cause notices involving Customs Duty to the
tune of over Rs 7,500 crore.
The Amendments to the Customs Act 1962 would validate
show cause notices which were rendered invalid by the Supreme
Court on technical grounds in February.
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