Circular No. 197/31/96-CX
dated 15/4/96

F.No. 21/2/95-CX.I

Government of India

Ministry of Finance

Department of Revenue

Central Board of Excise & Customs, New Delhi

Subject: Classification of Dhana Dal/ Dhania Ki Dal/ Coriander Seeds sold in pouches

In an directed to say that the doubts have been raised whether product “Dhana Dal”/ Dhania Ki Dal/ Coriander seeds put up for sale in pouches is classifiable under heading 09.03 as spices or under Heading 21.08 as miscellaneous edible preparations, not elsewhere specified or included. Gujarat Dhana Dal Manufacturers” Association has contended that “Dhana Dal” is noting but spices and as such it is correctly classifiable under Heading 09.03 of Central Excise Tariff.

2. It has been reported that coriander seeds are soaked in water before being put in a milling machine for removal of husk. The husk so removed is reportedly sold as cattle feed while the seeds are dried and salted, mechanically sieved, roasted and then put up for sale either packed in gunny bags or in 3 gms., labelled small pouches. The product is known “Dhana Dal” in trade.

3. It is observed from the HSN Explanatory Notes to Chapter 9 (coffee, tea, mate and spices) that the said Chapter also covers seeds of spices. Seeds of coriander are specifically covered by Heading 09.09 of HSN. From the said notes it is also clear that addition of substances such as salts, anti-oxidants etc. will not take out coriander seeds from the purview of chapter 9. Coriander seeds belong to the family of spices and would remain therein whether in whole, crushed or powdered form even if there have mixed with other spices and other products of Heading Nos. 09.04 to 09.10 Further note 1(c) of Chapter 21 of HSN specifically excludes spices from he purview of Chapter 21. Further, as in the instant case, even if the products under reference viz. Dhana Dal/ Dhania Ki Dal/ Coriander seeds are not used as spices i.e. as condiments, the product remains its identity as spices since the general Chapter Note of Chapter 9 defines spices, as those which are mainly used as condiments. The Chapter Note does not require that to be called as spices, such products (including seeds etc.) should be solely used as condiments.

Analogy can be derived from the fact that aniseeds, which are also used as freshener just like the product in question, does not merit classification under Chapter 21 but is to be treated as spices and is classified under chapter sub-heading 0909.10 of the HSN.

4. In view of the above, Board is of the view that Dhana Dal/ Dhania Ki Dal/ Coriander seeds are rightly classification under Heading 09.03 of the Central Excise Tariff.

(S.C. Bhatia)
Under Secretary to the Govt. of India

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