Jewellery valuation counter for international fliers at Delhi airport soon

New Delhi: Fliers travelling with gold and precious jewellery may soon have some relief as Customs is mulling opening a counter at Delhi Airport for appraisal of such expensive items before embarking on a foreign travel so that they are not charged duty on their return.

Giving away the earlier practice where a flier had to get their gold and jewellery evaluated at the Gems and Jewellery appraisal counter in Central Delhi, Customs has intensified its negotiations with the Delhi International Airport Limited, operator of Indira Gandhi International Airport here, official sources said.

The Customs, which had been making attempts for having such counter for last one year, got into fast track after Delhi High Court recently directed it to take a reasoned decision within six months on shifting the existing appraisal counter to the airport or in the close vicinity.

At present, an international flier has to travel about 30 kms from the airport to appraisals counters at Jhandewalan area in the national capital to declare gold and other expensive jewelleries and take an export certificate.

The certificate can be shown to customs officials upon their return to avoid payment of duty on such items declared by them.

There are already counters at the airport to declare personal items like watches, sun glasses and others being taken by fliers and airline crew.

The High Court has asked Customs to have an additional counter inside or near the airport in case the appraisal counter cannot be shifted.

A public interest litigation was filed in the court on the non-availability of appraisal counters inside the airport. "No appraisal counter which can give export certificate is available at IGI Airport and for getting the assessment; passengers are directed to Customs House at Jhandewalan, which is 30 kms distance -- the same causes inconvenience to the passengers," the petition said

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