At, Customs Excise Service Tax Appellate Tribunal South Zonal Bench At Chennai
By, THE HONOURABLE MS. JYOTI BALASUNDARAM
By, VICE PRESIDENT
Ms. Sridevi, Adv. Shri C. Rangaraju, SDR.
The appellants are aggrieved by the order of the Commissioner of Customs confiscating the goods declared as finished leather but found to be other than finished leather, in the absence of protective coating, with an option of redeeming the goods for being taken back to town on payment of a fine of Rs. 7 lakhs and imposition of penalty of Rs.3 lakhs.
2. I have heard both sides. I find that there is no dispute that it is only the process of protective coating which was not carried out on the goods. I find that in similar circumstances in the case of M/s.Avanthi Leathers Ltd. Final Order No.902/09 dated 20.07.2009, the order of the Commissioner (Appeals) setting aside confiscation and imposing penalty was upheld after noting that no effort was made to export the goods in question and that the goods had been allowed to be taken back for the purpose of applying protective coating so as to make the goods conform to the definition of finished leather. Similar view was taken in the case of M/s.Meena Leather Exports - Final Order No.1844, 1845/09 dated 27.11.2009, following the Tribunal?s decisions in Sri Shanmuga Prima Tannery Vs Commissioner of Customs, Chennai Final Order No.688/2003 dated 04.09.2003 and Vijayalakshmi Leathers Vs Commissioner of Csutoms, Chennai [2000 (119) E.L.T.656 (Tribunal)]. The ratio of these decisions is squarely applicable to the facts of the present case and hence following the same I set aside the impugned order of confiscation and impositio
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n of penalty and direct the appellants to carry out the process of protective coating before exporting the goods. The appeal is thus allowed with consequential relief.