CBIC issued guidelines w.r.t. testing of outside samples by Revenue Laboratories

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The CBIC vide Circular No. 46/2020-Customs dated October 15, 2020 regarding testing of outside samples by Revenue Laboratories.

Central Revenues Control Laboratories (CRCL), assist the field formations in chemical analysis of samples of various trade commodities to enable appropriate assessment of duties. These laboratories also assist in the enforcement of Customs Act, NDPS Act, GST Laws, Central Excise Act and other allied Acts including for the purpose of environment protection, food safety, etc.

The Revenue Laboratories have been extensively modernized over past 03 years with the induction of state-of-the-art equipment and improvement of physical infrastructure. New man-power has also been inducted at the cutting-edge levels in Group ‘A’, Group ‘B’ and Group ‘C’. Eight (08) of these laboratories have obtained NABL Accreditation, as per ISO/IEC 17025:2017, for defined scope from March, 2019 onwards. The CRCL, New Delhi; Custom House Laboratory, Mumbai; JNCH Laboratory, Nhava Sheva; Custom House Laboratory, Chennai; Custom House Laboratory, Cochin; Custom House Laboratory, Visakhapatnam; Custom House Laboratory, Kandla and C.Ex & Customs Laboratory, Vadodara are having NABL accreditation.

CRCL laboratories are now equipped to test samples which are hitherto forwarded to the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), Central Drug Standard and Control Organization (CDSCO), and Textile Committee in order to improve proficiency, ensure optimum utilization of equipment and other resources. Therefore, there is now an opportunity for Revenue laboratories for optimum utilization of the upgraded facilities, especially with state-of-the-art instruments, and to cater to the needs of these agencies with respect to the samples drawn at the customs area. Using CRCL by these agencies will not only help in optimal use of the available equipment but also reduce the dwell time.

Accordingly, the Board prescribes the following guidelines:

(i) As Revenue Laboratories can deal with the samples related to Drug Controller, FSSAI & Textile Committee, all the customs samples, are preferably be tested in the Revenue Laboratories only.

(ii) In case the facility to test a particular commodity or parameter is not available in the nearest Revenue Laboratory, such cases shall be referred to the nearest government laboratory where such a facility is available.

(iii) CRCL, New Delhi shall also function as Referral Laboratory along with other referral laboratories in Pharma, Textile & Food.

(iv) Whenever CRCL laboratories are not in a position to carry out a test, they shall make use of the nearest CDSCO/FSSAI approved laboratories/Textile Committee.

Keeping in view the above position, the relevant Custom House Laboratories are mapped with different Ports as per Annexure-A. Facilities available at CRCL, New Delhi as Referral Laboratory in Food testing are listed at Annexure-B.

Further, Revenue Laboratories are not equipped to test samples related to Animal Quarantine (AQCS), Plant Quarantine (PQCS), and Wild Life Crime Control Bureau (WCCB). Hence, the existing arrangements could continue in this regard.

The Circular along with Annexure can be accessed at: https://www.cbic.gov.in/resources/htdocs-cbec/customs/cs-circulars/cs-circulars-2020/Circular-No-46-2020.pdf;jsessionid=8E367A415EF2844B933BAF52F7945F4A