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More Customs duty-free imported goods?
January, 19th 2012

Passengers bringing imported goods to India may soon have some relief from Customs duty. Currently, passengers can bring goods worth Rs 25,000 free of duty. Customs department is planning to increase the amount.

Though no hike has been decided yet, chief customs commissioner, Vineet Kumar said on Wednesday that they have requested the government to increase the permissible limit or amount.

"Branded items are expensive these days. Even if people buy a few things, they exceed the permissible amount," said Kumar. The decision comes at a time when many celebrities, including Dia Mirza, were detained when they failed to declare their dutiable purchases abroad. Customs is also planning to install boards at the airport so that they grab passengers' attention and can instruct and educate them to follow Customs rules.

A traveller's charter, issued by the Customs department, says that the baggage of international passengers will be opened only after explaining the reasons. It will be done in their presence. "We will help in repacking baggage if we have made you unpack them," the charter states. "We will explain the reasons if we need to search you," it added.

The charter states that investigating officers will explain the legal provisions and passengers' rights and obligations. It also states that no seized document will be withheld beyond 60 days except if needed for investigation or other proceedings. All passenger complaints will be acknowledged and replied to within 30 working days.

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