Circular No. 99/2003-Cus.
F.No.450/ 81 /2000-Cus.IV
Government of India
Ministry of Finance
(Department of Revenue)
Central Board of Excise & Customs
Subject: Import of non-standard tapes-instructions reg.
I am directed to refer to Board’s letter of even number, dated 24.7.2000 and subsequent letter dated 11.1.2002 (copies enclosed), on the subject mentioned above, wherein ,it was stated that import of non-standard tapes (tapes with dual markings i.e. inch and centimeters) are prohibited for import in view of the provisions of Standards of Weights and Measures Act, 1976. The Ministry of Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution has again brought to the notice of the Board that the field formations of Customs are still permitting the import of such non-standards tapes into the country.
2. The matter has been examined in consultation with the Department of Consumer Affairs. It has been observed that the provisions relating to import of measuring instruments are governed by the Section 49 read with Section 4 and Section 23 of the Standards of Weights and Measures Act, 1976 ( SWMA’76) . As per Section 49 , no weight or measure, whether singly or as a part or component of any machine or machinery, shall be imported unless it conforms to the standards of weights or measures established by or under this Act. The Section 4 of said Act defines that every unit of weight or measures shall be based on the units of the metric system. Further, as per section 23 , no weight ,measures or other goods shall bear thereon any inscription or indication of weight , measure or number except in accordance with the standard unit of such weight, measure or numeration established by or under this Act except for certain scientific investigation or research purpose.
3. A point has been raised that section 49 of the SWMA,1976 read with section 4 of the Act ibid does not require that the unit of weight or measure should “only” be in metric system. In this context attention is invited to section 23 of the said Act which prohibits any additional marking or inscription (i.e , dual markings) other than metric system.
4. A point has also been raised that proviso to section 49(2) of the Act permits the importer to get the markings done as per the metric system within 6 months of import. It is , however, clarified that this proviso applies to markings on commodities only & not to any weight or measure imported as such.
5. In view of the legal position mentioned above, it is evident that the import of measuring instruments other than standard units of metric system, is not permitted except under certain conditions specified in Section 23 of Standards of Weights and Measures Act, 1976. You are, therefore, requested to ensure that non-standard units of weight or measure ( including these with dual markings), except those permitted by proviso to section 23 of the Act ibid, are, on import, either confiscated absolutely or allowed re-export only.
6. Receipt of this Circular may kindly be acknowledge.
7. Hindi version will follow.
(D. S. Garbyal )
Under Secretary to the Government of India
Phone No. 23094182