Customs Information that might be useful

GeorgeO

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GUIDE FOR TRAVELLERS
INDIAN CUSTOMS
Directorate of Publicity and Public Relations
Customs & Central Excise
C.R. Building, I.P. Estate, New Delhi-110109
As on 22.05.2013
1
BAGGAGE RULES AT A GLANCE
Every passenger entering Indian has to pass through a
Customs check. He / She must fill up the Disembarkation Card
clearly mentioning the quantity and value of goods that he has
brought. On his / her arrival the passenger is first cleared by
Immigration Officer, who retains the Immigration portion of the
Disembarkation Card. Thereafter the passenger takes the delivery
of his/her baggage from the conveyer belts & passes through
Customs. The passenger has the option of seeking clearance through
the Green Channel or through the Red Channel subject to the nature
of goods being carried.
GREEN AND RED CHANNELS
For the purpose of Customs clearance of arriving passengers,
a two channel system has been adopted
(i) Green Channel for passengers not having any dutiable goods.
(ii) Red Channel for passengers having dutiable goods.
However,
(i) All the passengers shall ensure to file correct declaration of
their baggage.
(ii) Green channel passengers must deposit the Customs portion
of the disembarkation card to the Customs official at the gate
before leaving the terminal.
(iii) Declaration of foreign exchange/currency has to be made
before the custom officers in the following cases :
(a) where the value of foreign currency notes exceed US $
5000 or equivalent
(b) where the aggregate value of foreign exchange including
currency exceeds US $ 10,000 or equivalent
- Passengers walking through the Green Channel with
dutiable / prohibited goods are liable to prosecution/
penalty and confiscation of goods.
- Trafficking of Narcotics and Psychotropic substances is
a serious offence and is punishable with imprisonment.
2
DUTY FREE ALLOWANCES AND ENTITLEMENTS
FOR INDIAN RESIDENTS AND FOREIGNERS
RESIDING IN INDIA
A Resident means a person holding a valid passport issued
under the Passports Act,1967 and normally residing in India
I. For passengers coming from countries other than
(a) Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar or China.
(b) Pakistan by Land Route
Duty Free Entitlements For For P assengers For Pas sengers
Bonafide Baggage of age 10 Y e a r s o f age below 10
& above Years
Used personal effects FREE* FREE*
(excluding jewellery)
required for satisfying
daily necessities of life
Other articles carried in
person or in accompanied
baggage
(a) if Stay abroad for Va l u e d upto Valued upto
more than three days Rs.35000/- Rs.15000/- #
(b) if Stay abroad upto Valued upto Va l u e d u p to
three days Rs.15000/- Rs.3000/-
*If returning after stay abroad of more than three days.
# Notification No.37/2012 dated 23.04.2012
Note:
1. The free allowance shall not be pooled with the free allowance
of any other passenger.
2. The free allowance is not applicable to the following goods
1. Fire arms.
2. Cartridges of fire arms exceeding 50.
3. Cigarettes exceeding 200 or cigars exceeding 50 or
tobacco exceeding 250 gms.
4. Alcoholic liquor or wines in excess of 2 litres.
5. Gold or si,lv ienr any form, other than ornaments.
3
3. One laptop computer (notebook computer) over and above the
said free allowances mentioned above is also allowed duty
free if imported by any passenger of the age of 18 years and
above.
4. The goods over and above the free allowances shall be
chargeable to customs duty @ 35% + an education cess of
3% i.e. to say the effective rate is 36.05%.
5. Alcoholic drinks and tobacco products imported in excess of
free allowance are chargeable to custom duty at the rates
applicable to their commercial imports as per the Customs
Tariff Act, 1962.
6. Passengers normally resident of India who are returning from
a visit abroad Indian currency upto Rs. 7,500 is allowed.
7. In case the value of one item exceeds the duty free allowance,
the duty shall be calculated only on the excess of free
allowance.
II. For passengers coming from
(I) Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar or China, other
than by land route
(ii) Pakistan by land route
Used personal effects FREE FREE
(excluding jewellery)
required for satisfying
daily necessities of life
Other articles carried in
person or in accompanied
baggage
Note:
1. The free allowance shall not be allowed to be pooled with the
free allowance of any other passenger.
2. The free allowance is not applicable to the following goods
Duty Free Entitlements For For P assengers For Pas sengers
Bonafide Baggage of age 10 Y e a r s o f age below 10
& above Years
if Stay
abroad for more than
three days
Rs.6000/- Rs.1500/-
4
(a) Fire arms.
(b) Cartridges of fire arms exceeding 50.
(c) Cigarettes exceeding 200 or cigars exceeding 50 or
tobacco exceeding 250 gms.
(d) Alcoholic liquor and wines in excess of 2 litres.
(e) Gold or silver, in any form, other than ornaments.
3. One laptop computer (notebook computer) over and above the
said free allowances mentioned above is also allowed duty
free if imported by any passenger of the age of 18 years and
above.
4. The goods over and above the free allowances shall be
chargeable to customs duty @ 35% + an education cess of
3% i.e. to say the effective rate is 36.05%.
5. Alcoholic drinks and tobacco products imported in excess of
free allowance are chargeable to custom duty at the rates
applicable to their commercial imports.
6. Import of Indian currency is prohibited. However , i n the case of
passengers, who are resident of India and are returning from a
visit abroad, Indian currency upto Rs. 7,500 is allowed.
7. Incase the value of one item exceeds the duty free allowance,
the duty shall be calculated only on the excess of such amount.
5
SPECIAL ALLOWANCES FOR PROFESSIONALS
RETURNING TO INDIA
An Indian passenger who was engaged in his profession abroad
shall on his return to India be allowed clearance free of duty, in
addition to the aforesaid allowances, articles in his bonafide baggage
to the extent as mentioned below:-
(a) Indian p assenger (i ) U s e d household articles upto an
returning after aggregate value of Rs.12000/-
atleast 3 month (ii) P r o f e s s io nal equipment upto a value
of Rs.20,000/-
(b) Indian p assenger (i ) U s e d household articles upto an
returning after atleast aggregate value of Rs.12000/-
6 month (ii) P r o f e s s io n a l e q uipment upto a value
of Rs.40,000/-
(c) Indian passenger (i) Used household articles and personal
returning after a stay effects, (which have been in the
of minimum 365 days possession and use abroad of the
during the preceding passenger or his family for at least six
2 years on termination months), and which are not mentioned in
of his work, and who Annex I, Annexure II or Annexure III of the
has not availed this Baggage Rules 1988 upto an aggregate
concession in the value of Rs.75,000.
preceding three years.
Notes: For the purposes of baggage rules Professional Equipment
means:
Such portable equipments, instruments, apparatus and appliances
are required in the profession in which the returning passenger was
engaged. This expression includes items used by carpenters,
plumbers, welders, masons and the like; This concession is not
available for items of common use such as Cameras, Cassette
Recorders, Dictaphones, Typewriters, Personal Computers and
similar items.
DUTY FREE ALLOWANCES AND ENTITLEMENTS
FOR TOURISTS DEFINITION OF TOURIST?
A tourist is a passenger
a) who is not normally a resident in India;
b) who enters India for a stay of not more than six months in the
course of any twelve months period for legitimate non-immigrant
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purposes, such as : touring, recreation, sports, health, family
reasons, study, religious pilgrimage, or business;
A tourist arriving in India shall be allowed duty free clearance
of articles in his bonafide baggage to the extent as mentioned
below:-
Articles allowed free of duty
(1) ( 2 )
a) To u rists of Indian origin (i) used personal effects and travel
coming to India other souvenirs, if -
than tourists of Indian ( a ) these g oods are for personal use of the
origin coming by land tourist, a n d
routes as specified in ( b ) these goods, other than those consumed
Annexure IV during the stay in India,are re-exported
when the tourist leaves India for a foreign
destination.
(ii) articles a s allowed to be cleared under
rule 3 or rule 4.
(b) T o urists of foreign (I) u s e d personal effects
origin, other than (ii) articles o t h e r t h an those mentioned in
those of Pakistani Annexure I upto a value of 8000 for
origin coming from personal use of the tourist or as gifts
Pakistan, coming to and travel souvenirs if these are carried
India by air. on the person or in the accompanied
baggage of the passenger.
(c) To urists ( i ) u s e d p e r s o n al effects
(I) of Pakistani origin (ii) a r t i cles o ther than those mentioned in
coming from Pakistan Annexure I upto a value of 6000 for
other than by land personal use of the tourist or as gifts
routes; and travel souvenirs if these are carried
(ii) of P akistani origin or on the person or in the accompanied
foreign tourists coming baggage of the pa s s e n ger.
by land routes as
specified in
Annexure IV;
(iii) o f Indian origin
coming by land
routes as specified
in Annexure IV.
7
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs)
1. What are the Channels of Clearance?
There are two Channels for Customs Clearance:
i) Green Channel for passengers not having any dutiable
goods
ii) Red Channel for passengers having dutiable goods.
Passengers are advised to report at the appropriate
channel for Customs Clearance.
2. Who can bring Jewellery as baggage?
An Indian passenger who has been residing abroad for over
one year is allowed to bring jewellery, free of duty in his bonafide
baggage upto an aggregate value of Rs. 50,000/- (in the case
of a gentleman passenger) or Rs.1,00,000/- (in the case of
a lady passenger).
3. What are the norms for the import of Alcoholic drinks /
Cigarettes as baggage?
Following quantities of Alcoholic drinks and Tobacco products
may be included for import within the duty free allowances
admissible to various categories of incoming passengers :
- Alcoholic liquors or Wines upto 2 litres
- 200 Cigarettes or 50 Cigars or 250 gms. of T o b a cco.
The rate of duty applicable on these products over and
above the above mentioned free allowance is as under :
(i) Cigarettes BCD @100%+ educational cess
@ 3%
(ii) Whisky BCD @150% + ACD @ 4% + education
cess NIL.
(iii) Beer BCD @100% + ACD NIL + 3% education
cess
4. Who can import gold as baggage?
Any passenger of Indian Origin or a passenger holding a valid
passport, issued under the Passport Act, 1967, who is coming
.
9
Conditions
(i) The weight of silver (including ornaments) should not exceed
the quantity of 10 kgs. per passenger.
(ii) Such passenger is coming to India after a period of not less
than six months of stay abroad. However, short visits during
these six months shall be ignored if the total duration of such
short visits does not exceed 30 days and the passenger has
not availed of the exemption under this scheme, at the time of
such short visits.
(iii) The duty at the rate of 6% Advelorem + 3% Education Cess
is paid by the passenger in convertible foreign currency. Tariff
value of silver is taken as per the notifications issued from
time to time.
(iv) The passenger can either bring the silver himself at the time of
arrival or import the same within fifteen days of his arrival in
India.
(v) The passenger can also obtain the permitted quantity of silver
From Customs bonded warehouse of State Bank of India and
Metal and Mineral Trading Corporation subject to conditions
(i) and (iii). He is required to file a declaration in the prescribed
Form before the Customs Officer at the time of arrival in India
stating his intention to obtain the silver from the Customs
bonded warehouse and pay the duty before clearance.
6. What are the norms for Import of Foreign Exchange /
Currency?
Any person can bring into India from a place outside India
foreign exchange without any limit. However, declaration of
foreign exchange/currency is required to be made in the
prescribed Currency Declaration Form in the following cases:-
(a) Where the value of foreign currency notes exceeds US$
5000/- or equivalent
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(b) Where the aggregate value of foreign exchange (in the
form of currency notes, bank notes, traveler cheques
etc.) exceeds US$ 10,000/- or its equivalent
7. What are the norms for the Import of Indian Currency?
Import of Indian Currency is prohibited. However, in the
case of passengers normally resident in India who are returning
from a visit abroad, import of Indian Currency upto Rs. 7,500 is
allowed.
8. While coming into India how much foreign exchange
can be brought in by NRIs?
An NRI coming into India from abroad can bring with him foreign
exchange without any limit provided if foreign currency notes,
travellers cheques, Forexplus Card exceed US$ 10,000/ - or
its equivalent and/or the value of foreign currency exceeds
US$ 5,000/- or its equivalent, it should be declared to the
Customs Authorities at the Airport in the Currency Declaration
Form (CDF), on arrival in India.
9. What are the norms for the Import of firearms?
- Import of firearms is strictly prohibited.
- Import of Cartridges in excess of 50 is also
prohibited.
However, in the case of persons transferring their
residence (as per conditions specified in the rules) to
India for a minimum period of one year, one firearm of
permissible bore can be allowed to be imported subject
to the conditions that:
1) the same was in possession and use abroad by the
passenger for a minimum period of one year and that
such firearm can be disposed off after ten years of its
import. However, this facility can be availed only once.
11
2) the passenger has a valid arms licence from the local
(Indian) authorities;
3) the customs and other duties as applicable shall be
paid.
10. What are the norms for the Import of Pet Animals?
11. What are the norms for the Import of Baggage of
Deceased Person?
Used, bonafide personal and household effects belonging to a
deceased person are allowed to be imported free of duty subject
to the condition that a Certificate from the concerned Indian
mission (Embassy / High Commission) is produced at the
time of clearance regarding the ownership of the goods by the
deceased person.
12. What are rules & regulations for the import of Unaccompanied
Baggage?
The passengers can also send their baggage through cargo
which is treated as unaccompanied baggage. However, no free
allowance is admissible in case of unaccompanied baggage
which is chargeable to Customs duty @ 35% advalorem + 3%
Education Cess and only used personal effects can be
imported free of duty.
Provisions of Baggage Rules are also extended to
unaccompanied baggage except where they have been
specifically excluded.
The unaccompanied baggage should be in the possession
abroad of the passenger and shall be dispatched within one
Import of pets upto two numbers per passenger are
allowed as baggage only to persons transferring their
residence to India after two year of continuous stay abroad
in terms of Baggage Rules 1998 subject to production of
required health certificate from country of origin and
examination of the said pets by the animal quarantine
officer without an import licence issued by DGFT.
12
month of his arrival in India or within such further period as the
Deputy / Assistant Commissioner of Customs may allow.
The unaccompanied baggage may land in India upto two
months before the arrival of the passenger or within such period,
not exceeding one year as the Deputy / Assistant
Commissioner of Customs may allow, for reasons to be
recorded, if he is satisfied that the passenger was prevented
from arriving in India within the period of two months due to
circumstances beyond his control, such as sudden illness of
the passenger or a member of his family, or natural calamities
or disturbed conditions or disruption of the transport or travel
arrangements in the country or countries concerned on any
other reasons, which necessitated a change in the travel
schedule of the passenger.
13. What is Detained Baggage?
A passenger may request the Customs to detain his baggage
either for re-export at the time of his departure from India or for
clearance subsequently on payment of duty.
The detained baggage would be examined and full details will
be inventorised.
Such baggage are kept in the custody of the Customs.
14. What am I supposed to do in case of Mishandled
Baggage?
In case the baggage has been lost or mishandled by the
Airlines, a simplified procedure is in place for clearance of
such baggage which allows the passenger to have delivery of
his baggage at his door step by the Airlines.
There is no need to handover the passport or the keys of the
baggage to the airlines. The passenger has to first file a property
irregularity report (PIR) with the airlines for the missing
baggages. At the same time, he has to file a declaration
indicating contents in the missing baggages. The passenger
13
is required to obtain a certificate to that effect from the airlines
and get it countersigned by Customs indicating specifically
the unutilized portion of the free allowance. This would enable
the passenger to avail the unutilized portion of the duty free
allowance when his baggage is delivered by the airlines. Finally,
the passenger is required to submit all these documents with
the concerned airlines for clearance and delivery of goods on
his behalf.
The examination of the mishandled baggage would be carried
out in the presence of the passenger.
15. What are the norms for Airlines / Vessel Crew members?
Crew members are required to submit the correct declaration
before Custom authorities with respect to the currency gold
ornaments and electronic goods etc. in their possession on
arrival as well as departure.
Crew member is allowed to bring items like chocolates,
cheese, cosmetics and other petty gift items for their personal
or family use upto a value of Rs.1500 only at the returning of
the aircraft from foreign journey. However, a crew member on
final pay off or at the termination of his engagement with the
Airline shall be eligible for allowances as a common passenger.
16. Whether a passenger can import satellite phone?
Satellite phone is not permitted to be imported except against
a licence to be issued by the WPC wing of Ministry of
Communication and Information Technology.
OUT GOING PASSENGERS
1. What should you do when you leave India for abroad?
All the passengers leaving India are subject to clearance by
Custom Authorities. Only bonafide baggage is allowed to be
cleared by passengers. There is a procedure prescribed
whereby the passengers leaving India can take the export
certificate for the various high value items such as camera,
14
video camera, as well as jewellery from the Customs authorities.
Such an export certificate facilitate re-importation of such
goods while bringing back the things to India as no duty is
charged. The advantage of having the Export Certificate is that
the concessions you are entitled to, when you return, are not
affected.
OTHER INFORMATION
1. Export of most species of wild life and articles made from wild
flora and fauna, such as ivory, musk, reptile skins, furs,
shahtoosh etc. is prohibited.
2. Trafficking of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances is
prohibited.
3. Export of goods purchased against foreign exchange brought
in by foreign passengers are allowed except for prohibited
goods.
4. Carrying of Indian currency notes in the denomination of Rs.
500 and Rs. 1000 to Nepal is prohibited.
5. Export of Indian Currency is strictly prohibited. However
Indian residents when they go abroad are allowed to take with
them Indian currency not exceeding Rs. 7,500.
6. To u r i sts while leaving India are allowed to take with them foreign
currency not exceeding an amount brought in by them at the
time of their arrival in India. As no declaration is required to be
made for bringing in foreign exchange / currency not exceeding
equivalent of U.S. $ 10000, generally tourists can take out of
India with them at the time of their departure foreign exchange/
currency not exceeding the above amount.
7. Indian residents going abroad are permitted to take with them
foreign currency without any limit so long as the same
has been purchased from an authorized foreign exchange
dealer.
15
PROHIBITED AND RESTRICTED GOODS
Certain goods are prohibited (banned) or restricted (subject to
certain conditions) for import and/or export. These are goods of
social, health, environment, wild life and security concerns. While it
is not possible to list all the goods, more common of these are :
PROHIBITED GOODS
- Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic substances.
- Pornographic material
- Counterfeit and pirated goods and good infringing any of the
legally enforceable intellectual property rights.
- Antiquities.
RESTRICTED GOODS
- Firearms and ammunition.
- Live birds and animals including pets.
- Plants and their produce e.g. fruits, seeds.
- Endangered species of plants and animals, whether live or
dead.
- Any goods for commercial purpose: for profit , gain or
commercial usage.
- Radio transmitters not approved for normal usage.
- Gold and Silver, o t h er than ornaments (For import only)
- Indian and foreign currency in excess of prescribed limits:
- foreign currency in excess of US$ 5, 000 in the form of currency
notes or equivalent US$ 10, 000 or equivalent in the form of
currency notes, bank notes or travellers cheque is required to
be declared on arrival.
16
- foreign currency in excess of amount legally obtained or in the
case of tourists in excess of the amount declared on arrival or
in excess of the exempted limit of declaration at the time of
departure.
PENAL PROVISIONS
Please note that non-declaration, misdeclaration and concealment
of imported goods is an offence under the Customs Act which may
result in confiscation, fine, penalty and even prosecution.
The Indian Customs Act empowers imposition of heavy penalties for
those passengers who:
- attempt to walk through the Green Channel with prohibited,
restricted or dutiable goods.
- misdeclare their goods at the Red Channel
- attempt to export prohibited or restricted goods.
- abet the commission of any of the above offences.
The Penal Provision may lead to:
- absolute confiscation of goods, or
- imposition of heavy fine in respect of the concerned goods if
these are released;
- imposition of penalty on individual or concerned entities
- Arrest and prosecution including invocation of preventive
detention in serious cases.
17
Annexure I
1. Fire arms.
2. Cartridges of fire arms exceeding 50.
3. Cigarettes exceeding 200 or cigars exceeding 50 or tobacco
exceeding 250 gms.
4. Alcoholic liquor or wines in excess of 2 litres.
5. Gold or silv e r , in any form, other than ornaments.
Annexure II
1. Colour T e l e vision or Monochrome Television.
2. Digit a l Video Disc Player.
3. Video Home Theatre System.
4. Dish W a s h er.
5. Music System.
6. Air Conditio.ner
7. Domestic refrigerators of capacity above 300 litres or its
equivalent .
8. Deep Free.zer
9. Microwave Oven.
10. Video camera or the combination of any such video camera
with one or more of the following goods, namely:-
(a) T e le vision Receiver;
(b) Sound recording or reproducing apparatus;
(c) Video reproducing apparatus.
11. Word Processing Machine.
12. Fax Machine.
13. Portable Photocopying Machine.
14. V e s sel.
18
15. Aircraft.
16. Cinematographic films of 35 mm and above.
17. Gold or Silver, in any form, other than ornaments.
Annexure III
1. Video Cassette Recorder or Video Cassette Player or Video
Television Receiver or Video Cassette Disk Player.
2. Washing Machine.
3. Electrical or Liquefied Petroleum Gas Cooking Range
4. Personal Computer( Desktop Computer)
5. Laptop Computer( Notebook Computer)
6. Domestic Refrigerators of capacity up to 300 litres or its
equivalent.

Annexure IV
Amritsar:
(1) Amritsar Railway S t a t ion
(2) Attari Road
(3) Att a r i Railway Station
(4) Khalra
Baroda :
(5) Assara Naka
(6) Khavda Naka
(7) Lakhpat
(8) Santalpur
(9) Suigam Naka
Delhi :
(10) Delhi Railway Station
19
Ferozpur District:
(11) Hussainiwala
Jodhpur Division :
(12) Barmer Railway Station
(13) Munabao Railway Station
Baramullah District :
(14) Adoosa
[Poonch District :
(15) Chakan-da-bagh]

VALIDITY
The information in this booklet is valid as on 01/11/2012. However,
for exact and detailed information, please check up with the nearest
Custom House (please see list below) or if you live abroad, with the
Indian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate, for any changes.
(A) Chief Commissioner of Customs
Tel. No.
(i) Ahmedabad Zone 079-2754-2678
(ii) Bangalore Zone 080-2286-7990
(iii) Chennai Zone 044-2526-8925
(iv) Chennai (Prev.) Zone 044-2524-9955
(v) Delhi Zone 01 1 - 2 5 6 5 - 4 1 6 0
(vi) Delhi (Prev.) Zone 01 1 - 2 5 6 5 - 6 0 4 0
(vi) Kolkata Zone 033-2242-1173
(vii) Mumbai-I Zone 022-2262-0091
(vii) Mumbai-II Zone 022-2724-2393
(vii) Mumbai-III Zone 022-2682-8900
(viii) Patna (Prev.) Zone 0612-250-4043
20
(B) Commissioner of Customs and Central Excise
Commissioner of Customs, Ahmedabad 079-2754-4630
Commissioner of Customs, Amritsar. 0183-250-6408
Commissioner of Customs, Bangalore 080-2286-4739
Commissioner of Customs, (Airport), 044-2256-0406
Chennai.
Commissioner of Customs, (Port-Import), 044-2523-1207
Chennai.
Commissioner of Customs, Cochin. 0484-266-8068
Commissioner of Customs, 01 1 - 2 5 6 5 - 2 9 7 0
(Import and General) Delhi
Commissioner of Customs, Jodhpur, 0141-238-5414
at Jaipur
Commissioner of Customs, (Admn./Airport), 033-2210-5099
Kolkata.
Commissioner of Customs, (Port), Kolkata. 033-2243-6493
Commissioner of Customs, (Prev.), Kolkata. 033-2230-8658
(For Bagdogra Intl. Airport)
Commissioner of Customs, Lucknow. 0522-232-9372
Commissioner of Customs, Mangalore. 0824-240-8164
Commissioner of Customs, (C.S.I. Airport), 022-2850-0606
Mumbai.
Commissioner of Customs, (Import), 022-2682-8131
Mumbai.
Commissioner of Customs, (Port-Import), 022-2724-2411
Nhava Sheva.
Commissioner of Customs (Prev.), Patna. 0612-250-4998
Commissioner of Customs, Pune. 020-2605-1851
Commissioner of Customs, Tiruchirapalli. 0431-241-0672
Commissioner of Customs, Tuticorin. 0461-235-2964
Commissioner of Customs,
Visakhapatnam. 0891-256-4552
Commissioner of Customs & 0832-243-7057
Central Excise, Panaji, Goa
 
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