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2017 (8) TMI 574

Head Note:
Disobedience to respond to the summons issued under Section 40(3) FERA - offence under Section 56 of FERA, 1973 - Held that:- This point has come up for consideration before this Court in Enforcement Director and Anr. v. M.Samba Siva Rao and Ors. (2000 (5) TMI 586 - SUPREME COURT OF INDIA). Due to the divergence of opinion of the High Courts of Kerala, Madras on one hand and High Court of Andhra Pradesh on the other, a three Judge Bench of this Court considered the matter and held as clauses (i) and (ii) of Section 56(1) are material for deciding the quantum of punishment and further, there is no reason why the expression “in any other case” in Section 56(1)(ii) should be given any restrictive meaning to the effect that it must be in relation to the money value involved, as has been done by the Kerala High Court. The summons issued under Section 40, if not obeyed, must be held to be a contravention of the provisions of the Act and at any rate, a contravention of a direction issued under the Act, and therefore, such contravention would squarely come within the ambit of Section 56 of the Act.

The question of service under Section 40(3) of FERA, 1973 not being effected on the Respondent is irrelevant at this point of time as he was represented by an Advocate before the Trial Court. It appears that the Respondent is not interested in these proceedings. In any event, the judgment of the High Court cannot be sustained as it is contrary to the law laid down by this Court in Enforcement Director and Anr. v. M. Samba Siva Rao and Ors. (supra).


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