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Case Law Details

Case Name : Birendra Kumar Singh Vs The Union Of India (Patana High Court)
Appeal Number : Miscellaneous Jurisdiction Case No.5609 of 2011
Date of Judgement/Order : 06/09/2012
Related Assessment Year :
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 This petition has been filed by the petitioner for initiating a proceeding of contempt against the opposite parties for their deliberate and willful non-compliance and violation of order dated 14.11.2011, by which this Court allowed C.W.J.C. No. 12197 of 2011 filed by the petitioner & another and quashed the impugned seizure  and detention dated 02.06.2011 of the betel nuts and the truck on which it was loaded and the authorities were directed to release the truck and the betel nuts loaded thereon immediately after receipt/production of a copy of that order.

From the scheme of the procedure of the  seizure, investigation and confiscation as provided under the Act, it is quite apparent that there is no scope for continuance of the investigation after the seizure and detention of the goods had been quashed by the court of law after considering the merits or otherwise of the claim of the respective parties based on their pleadings and materials. Hence the plea raised on behalf of the opposite parties with respect to investigation and confiscation is absolutely frivolous and ridiculous, to say the least, and had obviously been raised by their counsel merely to save them from the punishment of contempt, which they have clearly committed and continued committing it merely to punish the petitioner for his fault of approaching this Court.

It is also apparent from the claim of the opposite parties that they had tried to justify their action and simultaneously they had tendered unqualified apology. This double faced stance of the opposite parties is against the settled principle of law in such matters. The facts of this case clearly show that the Assistant/Deputy Commissioner, Customs (Prevention) Division, Forbisganj, District Kishanganj (opposite party no.3) has orchestrated the things and misconstrued the provisions of law to the detriment of the petitioner merely with the purpose to overreach the order of this Court dated 14.11.2011 passed in   C.W.J.C. No. 12197 of 2011. The said officer being a senior officer should have known his limits and jurisdiction and crossing those limits and jurisdiction in such a manner knowing full well the facts of this case as well as the specific order/direction of this Court and its repercussions, is clearly a gross contempt, which he has committed as has been proved beyond any semblance of doubt.

 In these circumstances, this Court has no option but to hold the above named contemner guilty of contempt and punish him with simple imprisonment of three months, which must start within 30 days from the date of passing of this order and also with fine of Rs.2,000.00 (Rupees two thousand only), which must be paid within 30 days from today in favour of Patna High Court Legal Aid Society and receipt must be filed within the said period, failing which, imprisonment of the contemner shall be extended by one month more. The contemner must surrender before the Police within 30 days from today.

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