The Handling of Cargo in Customs Areas Regulations (HCCAR), 2009 provide for manner in which imported goods/exported goods shall be received, stored, delivered or otherwise handled in a Customs area. The CCSPs are required to ensure that adequate infrastructure, equipment and manpower is available for efficient loading, unloading, stacking, handling, stuffing and de-stuffing of containers, their storage, dispatch and delivery, including appropriate facility for handling hazardous cargo, connectivity with the Customs Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) system with power backup, etc. The premises within which an ICD or a CFS operates must be well secured and safe in respect of custody of the cargo, including avoiding pilferage and theft.
The Customs set up in an ICD is meant for examination of containers including supervision of stuffing and de- stuffing of containers, assessment and clearance of goods. Customs staff is deputed on permanent basis or on cost recovery charges basis. In CFS, Customs functions are limited to supervision of stuffing and de-stuffing of goods and examination. Assessment and clearance of goods takes place through the main ports/ICDs to which a CFS is attached. Customs officers deputed on cost recovery basis or merchant overtime basis discharge customs functions in CFSs.
The jurisdictional Customs Commissioner is responsible for ensuring that the custodians fulfil the requirements under HCCAR 2009.
Audit, examined the files and records available at the selected ICDs/ CFSs and jurisdictional Customs authority, and facilities for cargo handling available at selected ICDs and CFSs to assess the extent to which these:
- meet the requirements under HCCAR 2009,
- are able to cater to the needs of the trade, and
- provide efficient and seamless transport logistics.
Audit noticed following illustrative cases: