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Texport Fashion V/S CC, New Delhi

    Customs Appeal No. 597 of 2009 (Arising out of the Order-in-Appeal No. CC (A) CUS/ICD/288/2009 dated 31/08/2009 passed by The Commissioner of Customs (Appeals), New Custom House, New Delhi) and Final Order No. 54243/2017

    Decided On, 22 June 2017

    At, Customs Excise Service Tax Appellate Tribunal Principal Bench New Delhi

    By, MEMBER

    For Petitioner: Akhilesh Mishra, Advocate And For Respondents: R.K. Manjhi, Authorized Representative (DR)

Judgment Text

1. The appeal is against order dated 31/08/2009 of Commissioner (Appeals), Customs, New Delhi. The appellants imported and cleared various items under advance licence ion terms of Notification No. 43/2003-CUS dated 19/04/2002 without payment of Customs Duty. The import is subject to the condition that the licence holder shall fulfill export obligation and other conditions in terms of the said licence. A bond for Rs. 83,45,338/- was executed in this regard. The time limit to fulfill export obligation expired on 28/04/2004. The appellant could not produce the Export Obligation Discharged Certificate (EODC) duly issued by DGFT as Licencing Authority. The Revenue initiated proceedings to demand and recover customs duty, forgone. The case was adjudicated by the Original Authority vide order dated 06/11/2008. He confirmed the demand of Rs. 64,19,491/- and imposed a penalty of Rs. 15,00,000/- in terms of Section 112(a)(ii) of Customs Act, 1962. On appeal, the Commissioner (Appeals) ordered for a pre-deposit of Rs. 50,00,000/-. On failure of the same, he dismissed the appeal vide order dated 31/08/2009.

2. When the case was called today, Shri Akhilesh Mishra, Advocate appearing on behalf of regular Counsel for the appellant, submitted that the appellants want more time to produce EODC from DGFT office. We have perused the appeal papers. It is seen that the miscellaneous stay application as well as the regular appeal has been listed for hearing on numerous occasions in the past. In fact, repeated extensions were also granted to comply with interim orders for pre-deposit as well as to produce the latest position of their application pending with the office of DGFT. On 24/07/2014, it was specifically recorded by the Bench that the learned Counsel for the appellant sought time of 8 weeks on the ground that the appellant's application under Amnesty Scheme is pending before DGFT. On 08/10/2014 the case was dismissed by the Tribunal. It was recorded that the matter was 5 years old and the appellants have shown no interest in pursuing the same. On application for restoration of appeal, the same was allowed by the Tribunal on 11/05/2015. Thereafter the case was listed but adjourned on a few occasions. On 05/05/2017 when the matter was listed, the learned Counsel for the appellant - Shri Priyadarshani Manish, requested for further adjournment. As a last chance, the same was granted and the case was adjourned to 16/06/2017. As already noted, when the case is taken up on 16/06/2017 again further adjournment was sought by the appellant.

3. The learned AR submitted that the advance licence was issued in 2002 and the time limit given for fulfilling export obligation expired on 28/04/2004. Now, more than 13 years after, the appellants are still seeking adjournment on the ground that the matter is pending before DGFT. No record to this effect has been produced. As such, there is no merit in the present appeal.

4. We have heard both the sides and perused the appeal records. It is clear that the appeal filed in 2009 was relating to a matter of licence issued in 2002. We note that the appellants made specific submission that they have applied for Amnesty Scheme with the DGFT and are awaiting approval. We find there is nothing on the record to indicate that there is any pending proceedings before the Licencing Authority which is under active consideration. In spite of specific advice, th

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e appellants could not produce any such evidence. Request for repeated adjournments is not acceptable in a matter, which is more than a decade old. 5. The facts of the case are not in dispute. The demand for customs duty has been made in terms of licencing condition. These facts are not disputed. As such, we find no merit in the present appeal and accordingly the same is