NEW DELHI: The Customs said that the ICC Trophy in the custody of Mumbai Airport Customs is a promotional cup which will be taken to the ICC Headquarters in Dubai and has nothing to do with the World Cup given to the winning Indian cricket team on Saturday.
Dismissing reports that the Cup given to the Indian team was a fake, the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) issued a statement to say that BCCI had asked the customs to keep the "ICC Perpetual Trophy" in its custody since there was no clearance from the government for its import into the country.
The CBEC denied that the "original ICC Cricket World Cup 2011" was lying in the Airport Customs Warehouse in Mumbai.
It quoted ICC statement to say that the trophy seized by the customs was the "promotional, perpetual" trophy which remains in the keeping of the ICC at its headquarters in Dubai.
Narrating the sequence of events, the CBEC said two passengers by the name of Emma Waite and Rixon Heyder arrived from Colombo in Mumbai on April 1 carrying a trophy in their personal baggage which was claimed to be "ICC Perpetual Trophy".
"All goods and equipments imported temporarily for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 tournament, a list of which was given by the ICC Tournament Committee, have been exempted from customs duty.
"However, the list given by the ICC Tournament Committee did not cover the aforesaid trophy which was claimed by the passengers to be 'ICC Perpetual Trophy'," the CBEC said.
It said to remove all doubts, the concerned Customs officers, therefore, contacted the ICC Tournament Director and enquired about the said 'trophy', so that appropriate action could be taken expeditiously and the matter resolved.
In response, Professor R.S. Shetty, Tournament Director, ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 said in a letter the same day to Commissioner of Customs, Air Cargo Complex, Sahar, Mumbai informed that the 'trophy' in question was not to be used for any purpose inside the country for the ongoing World Cup.
The letter said it was being carried by Waite and Heyder as their personal baggage and that it would have been taken back to the ICC Headquarters on completion of their assignment in India.
It also further added that the trophy shall be collected by the two passengers on their way back to their destination.
Prof Shetty also requested that the Customs office may hold the trophy in the warehouse at the Mumbai Airport till it is collected by the two passengers on their return.
"It is, therefore, clear that the trophy meant for the winning side has been given to the winning side and an avoidable controversy appears to have arisen in the matter," the CBEC statement said[Source:Economic times].