Courier from UK

I recently returned from a visit to the UK, where I met some UK university/college officials for potential collaborations. One of them promised to send me some marketing/promotional literature (books/pamphlets) etc.

Imagine my surprise when a few days after my return to India, I received a call from DHL stating that they have in their possession a courier in my company's name (source unknown) which the customs have withheld as there is no commercial invoice attached to it. Realising that this could perhaps have been the courier which the University official had promised to send, I asked him to send me a declaration that these were only documents which had no commercial value and were not being sold to me. This he promptly did.

Despite that DHL have now taken to calling me on a daily basis and sending me emails requesting me to send them a signed authority letter asking me to declare:

"I/We as consignee/ entity having interest in the goods, hereby authorize DHL Express (India) Pvt.
Ltd. (hereinafter referred to as ‘DHL’), including its group companies along with their agents, to act as our agent to clear all our shipments carried by DHL from Customs and / or any other regulatory body. "

They also want me to send them 3 identification proofs under KYC.

My argument is that not having seen the shipment I cannot be certain that this is the same shipment that University gentleman sent and even if it is why is the onus on me to prove that the shipment does not contain anything suspicious when I have not even seen the shipment.

Could someone guide me if this is the correct procedure? And if my sending Authorisation letter along with my identification documents have any negative implications/fallout?

Best regards
Neeru more  

View all 61 comments Below 61 comments
As per FEMA Regulations in India, and similar regulations in other countries, any free sample/material/shipment,having no commercial value and hence not involving any foreign exchange transaction,being sent thru postal authorities or thru recognised/approved International courier companies,have to be accompanied by a certificate to the effect from the sender/shipper/supplier,and countersigned by their bankers.One copy of such certificate accompanies the sample/material packet.
So plz.ask the sender to prepare such certificate on their letter head and get it countersigned(with proper wording,as above) by their Bankers in their country and send to you/DHL Courier co.,who then shall deliver the packet to you without any declaration etc from you. more  
Neeru, you have to authorize DHL / any customs clearing agent to complete the customs clearing process for you. This applies to all sort of material being brought in the country whether it has commercial value or not.
Once you give the declaration it means that you take the responsibility for the material being brought into the country and that you are the owner of it.

The university officials would have definitely provided a written declaration regarding the contents of the courier while shipping from UK. You can ask DHL to provide you a copy of that declaration before you provide the authorization to DHL.

You can also request the University official to provide you an official declaration on the letterhead citing the docket number and the contents of the docket along with the value (in this case 0), you can use these documents to clear your courier through customs.

Please remember you will still have to pay some custom clearance fees for the courier. Please confirm the amount with DHL before giving them the authorization. more  
Yes Neeru, Paresh's advise seems to be sensible. This way you will be safe from any fraudulent activity. more  

Why dont you get the consignment number from the University and compare the same with the consignment number of the courier that DHL has? This way, one, you could be sure that this courier is from the University itself and two, also be sure that this contains only documents that contain no commercial value. You could then sign the authorised letter of declaration and hand it over to DHL. This way, you get the documents. more  
Dear Neeru you should write to the University if you have their contacts to know whether they have sent any delivery in your name as frauds are working now a days to cheat after trapp you more  
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