Posted by : CS K. K. Agrawal Feb 1, 2018

Section 1
The Customs Act
(1)
(2) Extends to whole of India and, save as otherwise provided in this Act, it applies also to any offence or contravention thereunder committed outside India by any person.

REASONS FOR AMENDMENT

Extracts of the case : Hi Lingos Co. Ltd. vs Collector Of Customs on 20 September, 1993

Even if it is held that the Collector has jurisdiction to order confiscation of goods, penalty (proceedings in personam) against the appellant are beyond his jurisdiction. Appellant is a foreign supplier of goods and the provisions of the Customs Act extends to India only. Hence penalty can not be imposed on a foreigner, who has neither come to India nor committed any offence under the customs law abroad, resulting in confiscation of goods.

The Customs Act, 1962, in Section 1(1) thereof specifically mentions that it shall extend to whole of India. No provision exists anywhere in the Act, to enlarge its applicability to the area beyond the territory of India. Significantly while enacting on allied Act namely Foreign Exchange Regulation Act, 1973, a special provision is made in Section 1(3) of the Act that it would apply to all citizens of India outside India and to branches and agencies outside India of companies or body corporate registered or incorporated in India. Thus, by special provisions, the said Act is made applicable to the persons residing outside India. Similar provisions however are not found in the Customs Act, 1962. Section 4 of the Indian Penal Code, also provides for extra-territorial jurisdiction to a limited extent and provides a clear indication that for making the provisions of Indian statute applicable to the persons outside the Indian territory specific provisions must exist in the Act itself and if such provisions are not incorporated in the Act, no action could be taken against a person/party outside the Indian territory.

Thus, with Customs Act, 1962 having force only within the whole of India, and with no provisions incorporated therein to invest any extra territorial jurisdiction, and with codified law of the Indian Parliament having applicability only within India, the powers of the Collector exercising his jurisdiction under the provisions of the Customs Act, would not stand extended to impose any personal penalty on the party/firm/company who are beyond the territorial jurisdiction of India, for any acts done by them beyond the Indian territory.

Meaning of assessment enlarged

Section 2(2). Meaning of assessment
Assessment means determination of the dutiability of any goods and the amount of duty, tax, cess or any other sum so payable, if any, under this Act or under the Customs Tariff Act, 1975 (hereinafter referred to as the Customs Tariff Act) or under any other law for the time being in force, with reference to––

(a) the tariff classification of such goods as determined in accordance with the provisions of the Customs Tariff Act;

(b) the value of such goods as determined in accordance with the provisions of this Act and
the Customs Tariff Act;

(c) exemption or concession of duty, tax, cess or any other sum, consequent upon any notification issued therefor under this Act or under the Customs Tariff Act or under any other law for the time being in force;

(d) the quantity, weight, volume, measurement or other specifics where such duty, tax, cess or any other sum is leviable on the basis of the quantity, weight, volume, measurement or other specifics of such goods;

(e) the origin of such goods determined in accordance with the provisions of the Customs Tariff Act or the rules made thereunder, if the amount of duty, tax, cess or any other sum is affected by the origin of such goods;

(f) any other specific factor which affects the duty, tax, cess or any other sum payable on such goods,
and includes provisional assessment, self-assessment, re-assessment and any assessment in which the duty assessed is nil

Section 2(28) : Indian Customs Water
New
"Indian Customs Waters" means the 20[waters extending into the sea up to the limit of Exclusive Economic Zone under section 7  of the Territorial Waters, Continental Shelf, Exclusive Economic Zone and other Maritime Zones Act, 1976, and includes any bay, gulf, harbour, creek or tidal river;

Old
"Indian Customs Waters" means the 20[waters extending into the sea up to the limit of contiguous zone of India under section 5 of the Territorial Waters, Continental Shelf, Exclusive Economic Zone and other Maritime Zones Act, 1976, and includes any bay, gulf, harbour, creek or tidal river;

SECTION 17.  Assessment of duty.

New

(1) An importer entering any imported goods under section 46, or an exporter entering any export goods under section 50, shall, save as otherwise provided in section 85, self-assess the duty, if any, leviable on such goods.
(2) The proper officer may verify the the entries made under section 46 or section 50 and the self-assessment of goods referred to in subsection (1)  and for this purpose, examine or test any imported goods or export goods or such part thereof as may be necessary.
(3) For the purposes of verification under sub-section (2), the proper officer may require the importer, exporter or any other person to produce any document or information, whereby the duty leviable on the imported goods or export goods, as the case may be, can be ascertained and thereupon, the importer, exporter or such other person shall produce such document or furnish such information.]
“Provided that the selection of cases for verification shall primarily be on the basis of risk evaluation through appropriate selection criteria

(4) Where it is found on verification, examination or testing of the goods or otherwise that the self- assessment is not done correctly, the proper officer may, without prejudice to any other action which may be taken under this Act, re-assess the duty leviable on such goods.
(5) Where any re-assessment done under sub-section (4) is contrary to the  self-assessment done by the importer or exporter
regarding valuation of goods, classification, exemption or concessions of duty availed consequent to any notification issued therefor under this Act (deleted)
and in cases other than those where the importer or exporter, as the case may be, confirms his acceptance of the said re- assessment in writing, the proper officer shall pass a speaking order on the re-assessment, within fifteen days from the date of re-assessment of the bill of entry or the  shipping bill, as the case may  be.
(6) Where re-assessment has not been done or a speaking order has not been passed on re- assessment, the proper officer may audit the assessment of duty of the imported goods or export goods at his office or at the premises of the importer or exporter, as may be expedient, in such manner as may be prescribed. (deleted)
Explanation.- For the removal of doubts, it is hereby declared that in cases where an importer has entered any imported goods under section 46 or an exporter has entered any export goods under section 50 before the date on which the Finance Bill, 2011 receives the assent of the President, such imported goods or export goods shall continue to be governed by the provisions of section 17 as it stood immediately before the date on which such assent is received

Old

(1) An importer entering any imported goods under section 46, or an exporter entering any export goods under section 50, shall, save as otherwise provided in section 85, self-assess the duty, if any, leviable on such goods.
(2) The proper officer may verify the self-assessment of such goods and for this purpose, examine or test any imported goods or export goods or such part thereof as may be necessary.
(3) For verification of self-assessment under sub-section (2), the proper officer may require the importer, exporter or any other person to produce any document or information, whereby the duty leviable on the imported goods or export goods, as the case may be, can be ascertained and thereupon, the importer, exporter or such other person shall produce such document or furnish such information.]
(4) Where it is found on verification, examination or testing of the goods or otherwise that the self- assessment is not done correctly, the proper officer may, without prejudice to any other action which may be taken under this Act, re-assess the duty leviable on such goods.
(5) Where any re-assessment done under sub-section (4) is contrary to the  self-assessment done by the importer or exporter regarding valuation of goods, classification, exemption or concessions of duty availed consequent to any notification issued therefor under this Act and in cases other than those where the importer or exporter, as the case may be, confirms his acceptance of the said re- assessment in writing, the proper officer shall pass a speaking order on the re-assessment, within fifteen days from the date of re-assessment of the bill of entry or the  shipping bill, as the case may  be.
(6) Where re-assessment has not been done or a speaking order has not been passed on re- assessment, the proper officer may audit the assessment of duty of the imported goods or export goods at his office or at the premises of the importer or exporter, as may be expedient, in such manner as may be prescribed.
Explanation.- For the removal of doubts, it is hereby declared that in cases where an importer has entered any imported goods under section 46 or an exporter has entered any export goods under section 50 before the date on which the Finance Bill, 2011 receives the assent of the President, such imported goods or export goods shall continue to be governed by the provisions of section 17 as it stood immediately before the date on which such assent is received

SECTION 18.   Provisional assessment of duty-

New
(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act but without prejudice to the provisions of section 46 and section 50,-
“(1A) Where, pursuant to the provisional assessment under sub-section (1), if any document or information is required by the proper officer for final assessment, the importer or exporter, as the case may be, shall submit such document or information within such time, and the proper officer shall finalise the provisional assessment within such time and in such manner, as may be prescribed

Old
(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act but without prejudice to the provisions of section 46,-

NEW SECTIONS 25A AND SECTION 25B

SECTION 25A. Inward processing of goods.

Where the Central Government is satisfied that it is necessary in the public interest so to do, it may, by notification, exempt such of the goods which are imported for the purposes of repair, further processing or manufacture, as may be specified therein, from the whole or any part of duty of customs leviable thereon, subject to the following conditions, namely:––
(a) the goods shall be re-exported after such repair, further processing or manufacture, as the case may be, within a period of one year from the date on which the order for clearance of the imported goods is made;
(b) the imported goods are identifiable in the export goods; and
(c) such other conditions as may be specified in that notification.

SECTION 25B. Outward processing of goods.

Notwithstanding anything contained in section 20, where the Central Government is satisfied that it is necessary in the public interest so to do, it may, by notification, exempt such of the goods which are re-imported after being exported for the purposes of repair, further processing or manufacture, as may be specified therein, from the whole or any part of duty of customs leviable thereon, subject to the following conditions, namely:––

(a) the goods shall be re-imported into India after such repair, further processing or manufacture, as the case may be, within a period of one year from the date on which the order permitting clearance for export is made;
(b) the exported goods are identifiable in the re-imported goods; and
(c) such other conditions as may be specified in that notification.”.

SECTION 28.  Recovery of 51[duties not levied or not paid or short-levied or short- paid] or erroneously refunded.

Insertion

Provided that before issuing notice, the proper officer shall hold pre-notice consultation with the person chargeable with duty or interest in such manner as may be prescribed.

Automated systems in Customs
Automated systems in Customs are one of the most important tools for simplifying international trade procedures. Automated Customs procedures replace the manual processing of Customs documents by the computer-assisted treatment of electronically transmitted information.

It may support the entire clearance process - from lodging, acceptance and processing of cargo and goods declarations for import, export and transit, payment of applicable duties and taxes, to release of the goods from Customs control - or only part of it. Customs automation offers new possibilities to administrations such as pre-arrival processing and automated release of securities and guarantees. It can facilitate the use of risk management and risk-based selectivity and the collection of data for reporting external trade statistics.

Therefore following sections of Customs Act are being amended to enable automated system in Customs in filing of import manifest, bill of entry, payment of duty, clearance of goods etc


1
Section 46

2
Section 47

3
Section 50

4
Section 51








Name change


Old Name
New Name
Significance
Import Manifest
Arrival Manifest or Import Manifest
To include scope of all manifest to include all goods carried by conveyance required to be delivered before its arrival or departure
Export Manifest
Departure manifest or export manifest


PAYMENTS THROUGH ELECTRONIC CASH LEDGER

Section 51A.

(1) Every deposit made towards duty, interest, penalty, fee or any other sum payable by a person under the provisions of this Act or under the Customs Tariff Act, 1975 or under any other law for the time being in force or the rules and regulations made thereunder, using authorised mode of payment shall, subject to such conditions and restrictions, be credited to the electronic cash ledger of such person, to be maintained in such manner, as may be prescribed.



(2) The amount available in the electronic cash ledger may be used for making any payment towards duty, interest, penalty, fees or any other sum payable under the provisions of this Act or under the Customs Tariff Act, 1975 or under any other law for the time being in force or the rules and regulations made thereunder in such manner and subject to such conditions and within such time as may be prescribed.

(3) The balance in the electronic cash ledger, after payment of duty, interest, penalty, fee or any other amount payable, may be refunded in such manner as may be prescribed.

(4) Notwithstanding anything contained in this section, if the Board is satisfied that it is necessary or expedient so to do, it may, by notification, exempt the deposits made by such class of persons or with respect to such categories of goods, as may be specified in the notification, from all or any of the provisions of this section

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