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2017 (7) TMI 312

Head Note / Extract:
Penalties on account of violation of Sections 9(1)(b) and (d), Section 68(1), Section 64(2) and 63 of FERA - Whether the show cause notice is void being received by appellant after the sun set period? - Whether the statements given under section 108 of the Customs Act can be used as evidence against the accused?

Held that:- The new law (FEMA) continues to govern action vis--vis all offences under the repealed law (FERA) in accordance with the provisions of the latter, the only restriction being that notice of contravention under Section 51 of FERA had to be taken by the adjudicating officer before the expiry of two years from the date of commencement of FEMA that is to say, by 31.05.2002. Since the show cause notice in the present case was issued by the adjudicating authority on 31.05.2002 which would be within the sunset clause under FEMA, its validity cannot be questioned, the fact that such show cause notice was served only in 2003 being inconsequential. Since the action was initiated within the period provided in law, delay (if any) in relation to the directions in the order of CEGAT would not render it bad.

In the present case, noticeably, the statements under Section 108 of the Customs Act have been taken note of by the authorities below for recording re-assurance on the ground the same corroborated the main incriminating circumstances, the same being seizure of unaccounted money and incriminating documents showing the infringing activity.

The submissions that the order of the Customs authorities has been set aside by CEGAT takes the appellants nowhere. The said order only brought to an end the proceedings taken out under the Customs Act. The said result can have no effect on proceedings taken out under FERA, its provisions being distinct from those of the Customs Act.

The questions of law raised in this appeal, thus, are answered against the appellants.


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