Indian govt introduces new customs form for Indians, foreigners from New Year

Published on : Monday, December 23, 2013

images21Passengers flying into India will have to fill in a new customs form on their arrival from the new year while the need to fill immigration form for returning Indians is being done away with.
All passengers coming to India will be filling up an ‘Indian Customs Declaration Form’ seeking details that will be different from the detachable perforated strip which is part of the immigration card at the moment.
Also from January 1, Indians will have to fill up immigration form only when they go out. “There will not be any immigration form for Indians returning from abroad,” they said.
Authorities have also introduced new fields for declaration of dutiable and prohibited goods.
For the first time, travellers would be asked to specifically declare any prohibited articles, gold jewellery (over free allowance), gold bullion and Indian currency exceeding Rs 7,500 in the new form.
The passengers will have to give details of countries visited in the past six days and mention their passport numbers on the new form, which was not there earlier.
Whereas, old fields like declaration of satellite phone, foreign currency exceeding USD 5,000 or equivalent, aggregate value of foreign exchange including currency exceeding USD 10,000 or equivalent, meat, meat products, dairy products, fish or poultry products and seeds, plants, fruits, flowers and other planting material have been retained in the new format.
The passengers will also have to give details of baggage being carried by them in a separate column instead of pieces of hand baggage and checked in baggage separately.
As per norms, maps and literature where Indian external boundaries have been shown incorrectly, narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, goods violating any of the legally enforceable intellectual property rights and wildlife products comes into the category of prohibited items.
Counterfeit currency notes or coin or fake currency notes and specified live birds and animals are also prohibited for import by passengers.
Passengers of Indian origin and foreigners of over 10 years of age residing in India (and coming from Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar and China) are eligible for duty free allowance of Rs 6,000. Whereas, a duty free allowance of Rs 35,000 can be availed by such passengers in case they are coming from other than these four nations.
As per rules, a tourist of foreign origin gets a duty free allowance of Rs 8,000. Indian passenger, who has been residing abroad for over one year, can get gold jewellery worth Rs 50,000 (for man) and Rs one lakh (for woman) without paying any import duty.
Officials said the purpose behind having separate forms is to ensure quick and timely filtering of collected information about passengers and avoid duplication of data.
The Finance Ministry has issued a notification of new “Customs Baggage Declaration Regulations, 2013″ which will come into force from Jan 1. These regulations shall apply to baggage of passengers coming to India, it said.
The new facility will help authorities to keep a check on duty frauds and cases of under-valuation, the sources said.


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