Sunday, 25 October 2015

Quashment Dismissal Judgment in a Customs Case

PLJ 2013 Peshawar 270 (DB)
Present: Mian Fasih-ul-Mulk and Assadullah Khan Chamkani, JJ.
SAEED IQBAL, INTELLIGENCE OFFICER CUSTOMS INTELLIGENCE, PESHAWAR--Petitioner
versus
HASANAT AKHTAR and another--Respondents
Quashment Petition No. 72 converted into W.P. No. 1740 of 2006, decided on 31.1.2013.
Customs Act, 1969--
----S. 185-F--Constitution of Pakistan, 1973, Art. 199--Appeal to Special Appellate Court--Quashment petition--Order passed by Customs Judge to release raw material from bonded ware house--If aggrieved by order of Special Judge was required to have filed an appeal before Special Appellate Court--Validity--Order of special judge had already been acted upon and alleged seized raw material had been released to respondent--No meaningful order can be passed by High Court at that stage even if it comes to conclusion that release of raw material was not warranted--Petition was dismissed.        [P. 272] A
Mr. Shahid Qayum Khattak, Advocate for Petitioner.
Mr. Isaq Ali, Advocate and Mr. Javed Ali Asghar, Standing Council for Respondents.
Date of hearing: 31.1.2013.
Judgment
Mian Fasih-ul-Mulk, J.--This petition was initially filed as a quashment petition against the orders of Special Judge (Central) Customs Taxation and Anti-Smuggling, Peshawar dated 18.01.2006 whereby the learned Judge while allowing pre-arrest bail to Respondent No. 1 also ordered the ex-bonding of 250 Metric Tone of RBD PalmOrein in respect of Bill of Entry No. 100048/05 dated 27.12.2005. However, on the objection of learned counsel for respondent that the order passed by the Custom Judge to release raw material from the bonded Ware-House is not amenable to the inherent jurisdiction of this Court, the Cr.Miscquashment petition was converted into instant writ petition on the assertion of learned counsel for petitioner that this Court can step-in to set at naught an order passed without lawful authority by any Tribunal or Special Court working in the territorial jurisdiction of this Court.
2.  Today, during the course of arguments, the learned counsel for respondent again raised an objection on the maintainability of instant writ petition by referring to Section 185-F of the Customs Act, 1969 whereunder the petitioner, if aggrieved by the order of Special Judge was required to have filed an appeal before the Special Appellate Court. The objection seems to be reasonable in view of the provisions of Section 185-F of the Customs Act, 1969, which runs as under:
"185-F Appeal to Special Appellate Court--(1). Any person, including the Federal Government, aggrieved by any order passed or decision made by a Special Judge under this Act or under the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1898 (Act V of 1898), may subject to the provisions of Chapters XXXI and XXXII of the Code, within sixty days from the date of the order or decision, prefer an appeal or revision to the Special Appellate Court, and in hearing and disposing of such Appeal or revision, such Court shall exercise all the powers of a High Court under the said Code. "
Moreover, the order of Special Judge has already been acted upon and the alleged seized raw-material have been released to the respondent, therefore, in our view, no meaningful order can be passed by this Court at this stage even if it comes to the conclusion that the release of raw-material was not warranted.
3.  For the reasons stated, this writ petition being not maintainable is hereby dismissed with no order as to cost.
(R.A.)  Petition dismissed

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