MP HC | Vehicle of first-time offender not to be confiscated where rule is for penalty of 30 times the royalty of mineral being illegally transported 

Madhya Pradesh High Court: This petition was filed before a Division Bench of S.C. Sharma and Virender Singh, JJ., against the order passed by the Collector under Rule 53 (6) of the M.P. Minor Mineral Rules, 1996 where a fine was imposed and petitioner’s truck and the trolley was confiscated.

Petitioner contended that the offence he was charged under was his first offence and thus, in light of the rule aforementioned, a collector could not have passed such order. Both parties had referred judgment dated 28-09-2018 passed in WP No.22046/2018 and other identical matter where it was submitted that under Rule 53 of M.P. Minor Mineral Rules, 1996, in case of the first offence, the penalty was 30 times the royalty of the mineral which petitioner was transporting illegally without any transit pass and the authorities without heeding to the aforesaid had directed the confiscation of the vehicle. In a catena of identical writs as mentioned above, similar submissions were made and Court had set aside the impugned order.

Therefore, impugned order was set aside with a view that lest, it is found that this is the first offence by petitioner, the question of compounding should be considered in view of the directions made in the aforesaid case referred. [Kanhaiya Dhangar v. State of M.P., 2019 SCC OnLine MP 184, dated 21-01-2019]

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