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4. Jurisdiction of Prize Courts in prize cases.-

(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being in force, every Prize Court shall have exclusive jurisdiction in respect of each prize and each proceeding for the condemnation of property as prize, whether such prize is taken before or after the commencement of this Act, if the prize is-

(a) brought into or seized within the territory of India;

(b) brought into or seized within a locality in the temporary or permanent possession of, or occupied by, the Armed Forces of the Union; or

(c) appropriated for the use of the Central Government,

and is brought within the territorial jurisdiction of that Prize Court:

Provided that in the case of a Naval prize, the Prize Court shall have jurisdiction only if the prize captured or seized is brought to a port or place lying within the territorial jurisdiction of that Prize Court.

(2) Every Prize Court shall also have exclusive jurisdiction in respect of a prize in which the prize property-

(a) is lost or entirely destroyed; or

(b) cannot be brought in for adjudication because of its nature and condition.

(3) Without prejudice to the generality of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) , a Prize Court shall take cognizance of and judicially proceed upon all manners of captures, seizures, prizes and reprisals of all ships, vessels, aircrafts and goods that are captured or seized, and shall hear and determine the same, and in accordance with this Act and rules made thereunder, shall adjudge and condemn all such ships, vessels, aircrafts and goods belonging to any country or State or the nationals, citizens or subjects thereof, as may be captured or seized as prize during a war or as a measure of reprisal during an armed conflict or in the exercise of the right of self-defence.

(4) Notwithstanding anything contained in this section, the Prize Court may in respect of any matter for which no provision or insufficient provision is made, by or under this Act, apply the principles of the International Law regulating that matter.

Naval and Aircraft Prize Act, 1971 Back

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