Electronic customs clearance begins at IGI Airport

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Customs Clearance

Good news for fliers. Those bringing in dutiable goods from foreign destinations will not have to stand in long queues for customs clearance now.

A new electronic system installed at the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) in the Capital now calculates duty on any goods and material being brought by them to India. Previously, the process of calculation was done manually at the airport.

This calculation, however, does not take into account the free allowances granted to individual fliers.

The system—Systematic Keeper of Receipts—keep a record of items being brought by a passenger into the country, without any human intervention. The time in calculation of duty on goods by the new system installed at the red channel will be one-tenth of the old practice, officials said.

A passenger had to spend on an average at least 20 minutes for getting duty calculated on the goods brought by him. This was in addition to the time spent in standing in queues.

During rush hours, passengers had to stand in queues for hours.

According to rules, a passenger is supposed to declare dutiable goods at the red channel at the airport. Those not having any dutiable goods are supposed to hand over the mandatory customs declaration form by an international passenger at the green channel.

The new system is pre-fed with duties leviable on items brought by the passengers and has ended any scope of discretion by any officer.

Earlier, there were instances where varying amounts of duty were levied on the same item, said an official, adding that the system will do away with all such instances.

A passenger can now go to the red channel and get a baggage receipt for a bank, where duty amount need to be deposited, instantly. His passport and boarding card details along with the dutiable goods brought by him can be recorded within five minutes, he added.

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