Frustrated at the inordinate delay in clearance of goods at the airport and seaport for the last few months, the constituents of the Madras Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) expressed dismay over the non-rectification of glitches in the Indian Customs Electronic Data Interchange System (ICES) 1.5 version.

The meeting was attended by the representatives of the Chennai Customs House Agents Association, National Association of Container Freight Station, Air Cargo Agents Association of India and Chennai and Ennore Port Steamer Agents Association.

Talking to reporters, MCCI Chairman of Expert Committee on Logistics, J. Krishnan, said: “It is not a fair system and it has major lacunae. There are fundamental flaws in the software that has to be addressed first. For the last few months, most of the cargo flights from Chennai are going with 50 per cent of its capacity, while it delayed the booking and departure of vessels.”

MCCI Member of Expert Committee on Logistics, G. Raghu Sankar said after the implementation of new version through a centralised server, all the problems had to be addressed to those sitting in New Delhi. Noting that the Airports Authority of India in Chennai earned 35 per cent of revenue through air cargo, Mr. Shankar said did it not invest even one-fifth of it in Chennai for development, though there was 80 per cent growth in volume in the last few years. Chennai Customs House Agents Association, president, P.S. Krishnan, said three touch screens deployed at the Chennai Customs House were not functioning for the last three days. National Association of Container Freight Stations, president, V. Upendran, said they were not able to take printout of Bills of Entry and thereby goods could not be cleared on time.

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