The Directorate General of Analytics and Risk Management (DGARM) had carried out the data analytics which revealed that 62 customs brokers (including 37 from Delhi) had handled more than 15,290 export consignments of 1,431 untraceable exporters. These customs brokers were placed in three categories based on the extent of their linkage with the non-existent or untraceable exporters.
In one particular case, a customs broker has handled exports of 99 untraceable exporters who claimed Rs121.79 crore of integrated goods and service tax (IGST) refund.
These customs brokers’ activities were under strong suspicion for quite some time and the officials were able to block IGST refund of Rs 226 crore in these cases so far.
“The matter is under further investigation. All these suspended customs brokers cannot transact business anymore,” the Board said.
An alert for 100 per cent examination of all import consignments have been inserted considering the likelihood of malpractice in imports as well by the doubtful customs brokers, the Board added.
Customs brokers typically handle non-risky exporters also. They are governed by Section 146 of the Customs Act, 1962 and the Customs Broker Licensing Regulations (CBLR), 2018. They are under legal obligation as per Regulation 10 of CBLR to verify correctness of IEC, GSTIN, and identity of his client and functioning of his client at the declared address by using reliable, independent, authentic documents, data or information.
This requirement is violated in case of 1,431 non-traceable exporters by these customs brokers.