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Report No. 29

Analysis of Special Enactments

48. Analysis of special enactments.-What we would like to emphasise is, that most of the special enactments dealing with these offences1 possess some special features, and we proceed to state some of these special features.

These special features are briefly, special penal provisions, provisions modifying mens rea, provisions relating to liability of officers of companies, vicarious liability, special rules of evidence, penalties by rules, special powers, special provisions as to sanction, provisions for publicity, and similar provisions which illustrate the special character of the enactments2.

1. Para. 2, supra.

2. See paras. 49 to 81, infra.

49. Special penal provisions.-We begin with one feature found in many of the enactments, namely, the existence of special penal provisions. These seem to take various shapes--

(a) There may be "Departmental" penalties (penalties which can be imposed by officers of the Department), as in the Income-tax Act and similar Acts, in the Customs Act and in the Stamp Act.

(b) Again, action by way of confiscation of goods can be taken, an example of which is section 3(2) of the Imports and Exports (Control) Act, 1947, read with the relevant provisions in the Customs Act1.

(c) Even in respect of the traditional penalties (such as imprisonment or fine), some of the special enactments contain special provisions. By way of example, we may refer to provisions relating to continuing offences2-3, provisions enhancing the powers of Magistrates in respect of fines4 (for offences under the special enactments), and provisions for enhanced punishment in respect of subsequent offences, e.g. section 16, Prevention of Food Adulteration Act5-6.

(d) Then, revocation or amendment of licences may be provided for. An example is section 12(1) of the Industries (Development and Regulation) Act7 1951.

(e) Lastly, penalties may be provided for, not in the enactment, but in the rules made thereunder. Thus, rules made under the Central Excises and Salt Act, 1944, contain extensive penal provision8-9-10. In our opinion, if certain penal provisions of special enactments are removed while other provisions are allowed to continue in the special enactments, then the integrated scheme of the special enactments would be destroyed without any compensating advantage.

1. Cf. F.N. Roy v. Collector of Customs, AIR 1957 SC 648 (650), para. 6.

2. See section 24(1)(iv), Industries (Development and Regulation) Act, 1951 (65 of 1951).

3. As to continuing offences, see discussion in Municipal Council v. Rawat Ram, AIR 1965 Raj 180.

4. See section 29A, Industries (Development and Regulation) Act, 1951 (65 of 1951).

5. Prevention of Food Adulteration Act, 1954 (37 of 1954).

6. See State v. Badri, AIR 1965 Raj 152, para. 12.

7. The Industries (Development and Regulation) Act, 1951 (65 of 1951).

8. Cf also section 30 (3) read with section 24(1)(iv), Industries (Development and Regulation) Act, 1951 (65 of 1951).

9. Cf. A.A. Beeravoo v. Collector, (1965) 2 Cr LJ 279 (Ker).

10. See also para 77 infra.

Proposal to include certain Social and Economic Offences in the Indian Penal Code Back

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