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Customs dept closely monitoring toy imports, newer modus operandi adopted to circumvent BIS norms: CBIC

The CBIC on Saturday said the customs department is closely monitoring import of toys and continuously tackling newer modus operandi adopted to circumvent the quality control and safety norms. The government earlier this week said 18,600 toys have been seized in the last one month from major retail stores, including those of Hamleys and Archies, at airports and malls across India for lack of BIS quality mark and use of fake licences.

In a tweet, the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs (CBIC) said the customs department is engaged with both BIS and the DGFT (Directorate General of Foreign Trade) to thwart attempts of circumventing the quality control and safety checks.

It said newer modus operandi adopted to circumvent the BIS restrictions by way of imports of parts of toys, staggered import of such parts through different ports, and misdeclaration of toys and their parts as entirely different items is being "continuously tackled".

"Indian Customs has been closely monitoring and addressing the problem of import of toys which do not meet BIS standards," the CBIC tweeted.

CBIC's comment was in response to a tweet by an individual who questioned how customs clearance was obtained during import of toys which did not have BIS quality mark.

Since January 1, 2021, the government has made it mandatory for toys to conform with safety norms specified by the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), a national standard setting body.

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The over 18,500 seized toys over the last one month were both locally manufactured as well as imported. Some of the toys did not have mandatory BIS quality mark, some had fake BIS licence number and some toys had 'origin of other countries'. The raids were conducted in major retail stores, including those of Hamleys, Archies, WH Smith, Kids Zone and Cococart, located at major airports and malls across the country.

Toys have also been seized from the Archies store at Ghaziabad's Pacific Mall, WH Smith stores at Hyderabad and Delhi airports, Cococart stores at Mumbai and Gujarat airports, and Tiara Toys Zone at Chennai airport, it said.

Besides, consumer protection regulator CCPA has also issued notices to three major e-commerce players – Amazon, Flipkart and Snapdeal – for alleged violation of toys quality control order.

The Open Magazine of India by Artmotion Network (https://magazine.armotion.com/)

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