Procedure for Customs Clearance
Air Cargo Complex, Mumbai is open from 8 A.M. to 10 P.M. on all days excluding Second Saturdays and Sundays. Importers must obtain an IEC Code No. (certain categories are exempt) and have to file a Bill of Entry seeking clearance of the goods. The Customs deal with the import concerning assessment, examination, etc. as per the Customs Act, 1962. Whether the goods are freely importable or not is governed by the EXIM Policy.
In case the goods are imported by airfreight at Air Cargo, Sahar, the importer has to either file the Bill of Entry himself or through a CHA (Custom House Agent) and after assessment involving quantification of the duty amount, duty has to be paid by the importer. The classification of the goods and rate of duty is as per Customs Tariff Act and there may be a concessional rate of duty for which the relevant notification has to be applied. In most cases examination is done by Customs after assessment and payment of duty and before given out of charge order (second check).
In cases of doubt, examination of goods is done before payment of duty 'first check procedure' and in certain cases provisional assessment is resorted to for which the importer has to furnish a Bond and sometimes even a Bank Guarantee. At Air Cargo, Mumbai, the importer has to submit the Bill of Entry (can also be filed before arrival of goods) at the CMC Service Centre and the entire processing of the document is done electronically through the EDI (Electronic Data Interchange).
In certain exceptional cases, direct delivery and manual Bill of Entry is allowed. The Custodian of the imported goods i.e. the Airport Authority of India, grants a demurrage free period of 5 days, within which most goods are in fact cleared by Customs. In cases of violation of Customs Act, Rules and EXIM Policy, the case is adjudicated and goods released on imposition of fine and penalty.