The prosecution cannot be deprived of the opportunity to prove evasion which by itself is an offence.”
The bench said that there was no justification for the high court to quash the charge merely on the ground that a rule has been omitted.The apex court, while setting aside the high court order, restored the order of the trial court which had in March 2013 framed charges against the company for alleged offences under provisions of the Central Excises and Salt Act, 1944 read with provisions of Central Excise Rules.
A complaint was filed against the company on August 4, 1987, by the then Superintendent of Central Excise department in Ahmedabad alleging evasion of excise duty.
Following the complaint, the trial court had summoned the company. Later, a provision of the Central Excise Rule was omitted by the government by a notification on May 20, 1994.Thereafter, the company sought a discharge in the case but its application was rejected by the trial court which framed charges against it.
The company had challenged the order before the high court which allowed its plea and set aside the trial court order.
( Source – PTI )