Suzlon Energy Ltd. (the Appellant) sought conversion of five shipping bills from EPCG Drawback Scheme to EPCG Drawback and Advance Licence/ DEEC Scheme. In terms of the Circular No. 4/2004-Customs, dated January 17, 2004 (the Circular) such conversion can only be allowed when the benefit of export promotion scheme claimed by an exporter has been denied by the DGFT/ Ministry of Commerce/ Customs due to any dispute. In absence of the aforesaid denial, the conversion claimed in the instant case was rejected by the Adjudicating Authority under Section 149 of the Customs Act, 1962 (the Customs Act) read with the Circular. Being aggrieved, the Appellant preferred an appeal before the Hon’ble CESTAT, Chennai.
The Hon’ble CESTAT, Chennai held that in terms of Section 149 of the Customs Act, the conversion is possible on the documents in existence at the time of export. The shipping bills in the instant case were supported by a certificate from the Chartered Engineer, which was endorsed with the export particulars. It was further observed that the export was made in the month of March and the request for the conversion was made in the following month. Hence, the Hon’ble Tribunal allowed the conversion of shipping bills from “EPCG Drawback Scheme” to “EPCG Drawback and Advance Licence” to the Appellant.