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24 bonded warehouses owe several crores to State coffers

By Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, Jan 3: At least 24 bonded warehouses in the State owe several crores of rupees to the State exchequer. This was revealed during a recent operation against them by Bureau of Investigation Economic Offences (BIEO).
There are altogether 88 bonded warehouses in the State.
Based on the BIEO operation, the Excise department has levied a 300% penalty on each of these bonded warehouses which had defaulted in paying ad valorem levy and value added tax (VAT) to the State government coffers.
However, the Excise department has not been realise the arrears from 14 bonded warehouses as their owners have moved Gauhati High Court, which had stayed the entire proceedings on the matter until it was disposed off. Meanwhile, efforts are on to realise the dues from the remaining 10 of the 24 defaulting bonded warehouses.  It may be mentioned that of late the Excise department has been under public glare following reports of huge irregularities allegedly committed by some owners of bonded warehouses in connivance with a section of corrupt Excise officials during the erstwhile Congress regime.
The multi-crore BG Bonded Warehouse scam in which its owner evaded paying excise duty and VAT has come to epitomise the rot in the overall administration. The Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of Assam Police is currently investigating the case, in which some senior officials of the Excise department too have been arrested along with the owner of the bonded warehouse.