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35. Custody and use of certificate.-

(1) The certificate of registry shall be used only for the lawful navigation of the ship, and shall not be subject to detention by reason of any title, lien, charge or interest whatever, had or claimed by any owner, mortgagee or other person to, on or in the ship.

(2) No person, whether interested in the ship or not, who has in his possession or under his control the certificate of registry of a ship, shall refuse or omit without reasonable cause to deliver such certificate on demand to the person entitled to the custody thereof for the purposes of the lawful navigation of the ship or to any registrar, customs collector or other person entitled by law to require such delivery.

(3) Any person refusing or omitting to deliver the certificate as required by sub-section (2), may, by order, be summoned by 1[any Judicial Magistrate of the first class or any Metropolitan Magistrate, as the case may be,] to appear before him and to be examined touching such refusal, and if the person is proved to have absconded so that the order of such magistrate cannot be served on him, or if he persists in not delivering up the certificate, 2[the said Magistrate] shall certify the fact, and the same proceedings may then be taken as in the case of a certificate mislaid, lost or destroyed, or as near thereto as circumstances permit.

(4) If the master or owner of an Indian ship uses or attempts to use for her navigation a certificate of registry not legally granted in respect of the ship, he shall be guilty of an offence under this sub-section and the ship shall be liable to forfeiture.

Merchant Shipping Act, 1958 Back

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