ABDULLA Vs. A V MENON ASST COLLECTOR OF CENTRAL EXCISE
HIGH COURT OF KERALA
A.V. MENON, ASST. COLLECTOR OF CENTRAL EXCISE
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(1.) A very short, but fairly important, question is raised in this revision petition.
(2.) The petitioner has been convicted under R.126P of the Defence of India Rules (the Gold Control Rules of 1963) and been sentenced to simple imprisonment for six months and a fine of Rs. 2,000/-. The counsel of the petitioner submits that in view of the advanced age (80 or 81) of the petitioner, who is a first offender, in view of the fact that the Department) has already imposed a fine of Rs. 2,000/- and has also confiscated the gold and in view of the fact that the Gold Control Rules have been substantially relaxed, the petitioner might be dealt with under the Probation of Offenders Act. The Central Government Pleader brings to my notice that under R.126P a minimum sentence is provided, so that the question whether in such a case the provisions of the Probation of Offenders Act can be applied may be considered.
(3.) Under some statutes minimum punishments are provided. Such punishments appear in two forms, one, a minimum punishment for the first offence and enhanced punishments for subsequent offences, & two, a minimum punishment irrespective of the fact whether the offence is the first or the subsequent. The case before me is of the second category. In a case of the first category, the argument that the Probation of Offenders Act is excluded may have more force than in a case of the second category. However, my opinion on the question is that there is no distinction between the two cases.;
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