The Mumbai Customs have suggested the Centre through the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) to increase the duty free allowance slab beyond Rs 25,000. The rising cost of branded goods and the increased indulgence by Indians towards branded ware has found the
Rs 25,000-bracket impractical. The Customs levies a duty on import of goods by Indians over the duty free allowance of Rs 25,000 for those who stay abroad for more than three days under the Indian Customs Act.
We have sent an advice. We are seeing that passengers are coming with more branded goods and this has been discussed, said Vineet Kumar, Chief Commissioner of Customs.
In 2011, many celebrities, including Dia Mirza and Anushka Sharma, politicians and high-end investors were stopped at the airport after they failed to declare their goods. At least the awareness to declare the goods increased, said Shobha Chary, Chief Commissioner of Customs, Mumbai, Zone I, rejecting assumptions that celebrities were being targeted.
Chary was speaking at a press meet called to declare a Trade Facilitation Fortnight to mark the golden jubilee of The Indian Customs Acts, 1962. A new biometric security system will be introduced across Mumbai formations of Customs, more like a security feature to ensure touts, illegal persons and others who hamper trade do not get access to the custom areas across Mumbai.
The ports will also see the addition of three scanners to keep track of the cargo that is imported (currently only eight per cent of the imported cargo goes through scanners).