HC rejects man’s plea to return to Afghanistan without paying fine

‘Very bleak chance’ of his coming back to India, says court

The Delhi High Court has rejected the plea of an Afghan national, who is embroiled in a customs case, to go to his country to look after his family, noting there was “very bleak chance” of his coming back to India in view of the prevailing situation there.

Justice Mukta Gupta said there was no ground to release the man’s passport and permit him to leave India without depositing the penalty of ₹13 lakh imposed on him.

Ruhulla Amin was intercepted at the IGI Airport here carrying certain medicines illegally to Afghanistan. The value of the seized goods was calculated at ₹90.5 lakh.

A redemption fine of ₹9 lakh was imposed on the petitioner besides a penalty of ₹13 lakh under Section 114 of the Customs Act. Mr. Amin has not paid the penalty.

Ready to deposit 20%

The petitioner stated that he has 11 children, his first wife has been killed by militants and he has to look after his family. The plea stated that he was not in a position to deposit the penalty amount. He urged the court to permit him to deposit 20% of the amount and leave for Afghanistan.

His counsel argued that Mr. Amin is not inclined to take the goods to Afghanistan, hence the redemption fine of ₹9 lakh is not required to be paid and only the penalty has to be deposited.

“In view of this fact and particularly the fact that there is very bleak chance of the petitioner being able to come back to India, in view of the prevailing circumstances in Afghanistan, this court finds no ground to release the passport of the petitioner and permit him to leave the country without depositing the penalty of ₹13 lakh,” the court said.

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