Goods of Chinese origin have been ordered to be released by the Customs department except for a few with ‘specific’ intelligence. This comes after an intensified vigilance from Monday night on all Chinese cargo that has come to Chennai port and airport, based on ‘suspicion,’ said industry sources.
Customs officials were tight-lipped and declined to give any information on the search and what the suspicion was all about.
S Nataraja, President of Chennai Brokers Association, said that its members can approach custodian (port, airport or container freight station) for delivery of goods for which ‘out of charge’ order — issued by the Customs offer to clear the goods after payment of duty — had already been granted.
Direct Port Delivery containers that are granted OOC are being released by the port/terminals from Tuesday night. The association’s members are involved in clearing of goods.
Further, Bills of Entry (B/Es) filed before June 24 and pending for OOC are being redirected to groups for Customs examination and all air cargo Customs goods are released on completion of Customs examination. B/Es filed on or after June 24 will not have any issue and will be cleared as per the system guidelines, he said.
Chinese cargo is treated on par with any other country of origin cargo. There is no special treatment except on specific intelligence items that are undisclosed, he said. Nearly 30 per cent of cargo, mainly medical and electronic items, handled at Chennai originates from China, he added.