After Chapter VI of the principal Act, the following Chapter shall be inserted, namely:-
The provisions of this Chapter shall apply only to the following persons, namely:-
(a) Every person who has been convicted of an offence punishable under this Act with imprisonment for a term of three years or more;
(b) Every associate of a person referred to in clause (a)
(c) Any holder (hereafter in this clause referred to as the present holder) of any property which was at any time previously held by a person referred to in clause (a) or clause (b) unless the present holder or, as the case may be, any one who held such property after such person and before the present holder, is or was a transferee in good faith for adequate consideration.
In this Chapter, unless the context otherwise requires,-
(a) "Appellate Tribunal" means the Appellate Tribunal for Forfeited
Property constituted under section 58N;
(b) "Associate" in relation to a person whose property is liable to be forfeited under this Chapter, includes-
(i) Any individual who had been or is managing the affairs or keeping the accounts of such person;
(ii) Any association of persons, body of individuals, partnership firm or private company within the meaning of the Companies Act, 1956 (1 of 1956) of which such person had been or is a member, partner or director;
(iii) Any individual who had been or is a member, partner or director of an association of persons, body of individuals, partnership firm or private company referred to in sub-clause (ii) at any time when such person had been or is a member, partner or d rector of such association, body, partnership firm or private company;
(iv) Any person, who had been or is managing the affairs, or keeping the accounts of any association of persons, body of individuals, partnership firm or private company referred to in sub-clause (iii)
(v) The trustee of any trust, where,-
(1) The trust has been created by such person; or
(2) The value of the assets contributed by such person (including the value of the assets, if any, contributed by him earlier) to the trust amounts on the date on which contribution is made, to not less than date; twenty per cent. of the value of the assets of the trust on that
(vi) Where the competent authority, for reasons to be recorded in writing, considers that any properties of such person are held on his behalf by any other person, such other person;
(c) "Competent authority" means an officer authorised under section 58D;
(d) "Concealment" means the concealment or disguise of the nature, source, disposition, movement or ownership of property and includes the movement or conversion of such property by electronic transmission or by any other means;
(e) "Freezing" means temporarily prohibiting the transfer, conversion, disposition or movement of property by an ORDER issued under section 58F;
(f) "Identifying" includes establishment of proof that the property was derived from, or used in, the illegal hunting and trade of wild life and its products;
(g) "Illegally acquired property" in relation to any person to whom this Chapter applies, means,-
(i) Any property acquired by such person, wholly or partly out of or by means of any income, earnings or assets derived or obtained FROM or attributable to illegal hunting and trade of wild life and its products and derivatives;
(ii) Any property acquired by such person, for a consideration or by any means, wholly or partly traceable to any property referred to in sub-clause (i) or the income or earning FROM such property, and includes-
(A) Any property held by such person which would have been, in relation to any previous holder thereof, illegally acquired property under this clause if such previous holder had not ceased to hold it, unless such person or any other person who held the property at any time after such previous holder or, where there are two or more such previous holders, the last of such previous holders is or was a transferee in good faith for adequate consideration;
(B) Any property acquired by such person, for a consideration, or by any means, wholly or partly traceable to any property falling under item (A), or the income or earnings therefrom;
(h) "Property" means property and assets of every description, whether corporeal or incorporeal, movable or immovable, tangible or intangible and deeds and instruments evidencing title to, or interest in, such property or assets, derived FROM the illegal hunting and trade of wild life and its products;
(i) "Relative" means-
(1) Spouse of the person;
(2) Brother or sister of the person;
(3) Brother or sister of the spouse of the person;
(4) Any lineal ascendant or descendant of the person;
(5) Any lineal ascendant or descendant of the spouse of the person;
(6) Spouse of a person referred to in sub-clause (2),sub-clause (3), sub-clause (4) or sub-clause (5)
(7) Any lineal descendant of a person referred to in sub-clause (2) or sub-clause (3)
(j) "Tracing" means determining the nature, source, disposition, movement, title or ownership of property;
(k) "Trust" includes any other legal obligation.
58C. Prohibition of holding illegally acquired property.-
(1) FROM the date of commencement of this Chapter, it shall not be lawful for any person to whom this Chapter applies to hold any illegally acquired property either by himself or through any other Person on his behalf.
(2) Where any person holds such property in contravention of the provisions of sub-section (1), such property shall be liable to be forfeited to the State Government concerned in accordance with the provisions of this Chapter:
Provided that no property shall be forfeited under this Chapter if such property was acquired by a person to whom this Act applies before a period of six years FROM the date on which he was charged for an offence relating to illegal hunting and trade of ild life and its products.
58D. Competent authority.-
The State Government may, by ORDER published in the Official Gazette, authorise any officer not below the rank of Chief Conservator of Forests to perform the functions of the competent authority under this Chapter in respect of such persons or classes of persons as the State Government may, direct.
58E. Identifying illegally acquired property.-
(1) An officer not below the rank of Deputy Inspector General of Police duly authorised by the Central Government or as the case may be, the State Government, shall, on receipt of a complaint FROM the compete authority about any person HAVING illegally acquired property, proceed to take all steps necessary for tracing and identifying any property illegally acquired by such person.
(2) The steps referred to in sub-section (1) may include any inquiry, investigation or survey in respect of any person, place, property, assets, documents, books of account in any bank or financial institution or any other relevant step as may be necessay.
(3) Any inquiry, investigation or survey referred to in sub-section
(2) shall be carried out by an officer mentioned in sub-section (1) in accordance with such directions or guidelines as the competent authority may make or issue in this behalf.
58F. Seizure or freezing of illegally acquired property.-
(1) Where any officer conducting an inquiry or investigation under section 58E has reason to believe that any property in relation to which such inquiry or investigation is being conducted is an illegally acquired property and such property is likely to be concealed, transferred or dealt with in any manner which may result in frustrating any proceeding relating to forfeiture of such property under this Chapter, he may make an ORDER for seizing such property and where it is not practicable to seize such property, he may make an ORDER that such property shall not be transferred or otherwise dealt with, except with the prior permission of the officer making such order, or of the competent authority an a copy of such ORDER shall be served on the person concerned:
Provided that a copy of such an ORDER shall be sent to the competent authority within forty-eight hours of its being made.
(2) Any ORDER made under sub-section (1) shall have no effect unless the said ORDER is confirmed by an ORDER of the competent authority within a period of thirty days of its being made.
Explanation.- For the purposes of this section,"transfer of property" means any disposition, conveyance, assignment, settlement, delivery, payment or other alienation of property and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, includes-
(a) The creation of a trust in property;
(b) The grant or creation of any lease,mortgage,charge,easement, licence, power, partnership or interest in property;
(c) The exercise of a power of appointment, of property vested in any person not the owner of the property, to determine its disposition in favour of any person other than the donee of the power; and
(d) Any transaction entered INTO by any person with intent thereby to diminish directly or indirectly the value of his own property and to increase the value of the property of any other person.
58G. Management of properties seized or forfeited under this
(1) The State Government may, by ORDER published in the Official Gazette, appoint as many of its officers (not below the rank of Conservator of Forests) as it thinks fit, to perform the functions of an Administrator.
(2) The Administrator appointed under sub-section (1) shall receive and manage the property in relation to which an ORDER has been made under sub-section (1) of section 58F or under section 58-I in such manner and subject to such conditions as may be pre cribed.
(3) The Administrator shall also take such measures as the State
Government may direct, to dispose of the property which is forfeited to the State Government.
58H. Notice of forfeiture of property.-
(1) If HAVING regard to the value of the properties held by any person to whom this Chapter applies, either by himself or through any other person on his behalf, his known sources of income, earnings or assets, and any other information or material available to it as a result of a report FROM any officer making an investigation under section 58E or otherwise, the competent authority for reasons to be recorded in writing believes that all or any of such properties are illegally acquired properties, it may serve a notice upon such person (hereinafter referred to as the person affected) calling upon him within a period of thirty days specified in the notice to SHOW cause why all or any of such properties, as the case m y be, should not be declared to be illegally acquired properties and forfeited to the State Government under this
Chapter and in support of his case indicate the sources of his income, earnings or assets, out of which or by means of which he has acquired such property, the evidence on which he relies and other relevant information and particulars.
(2) Where a notice under sub-section (1) to any person specifies any property as being held on behalf of such person by any other person, a copy of the notice shall also be served upon such other person.
58-I. Forfeiture of property in certain cases.-
(1) The competent authority may,after considering the explanation, if any, to the SHOW cause notice issued under section 58H, and the materials available before it and after giving to the person affected an in a case where the person affected holds any property specified in the notice through any other person, to such other person, also a reasonable opportunity of being heard, by order, record a finding whether all or any of the properties in question are illegally acquired properties:
Provided that if the person affected (and in a case where the person affected holds any property specified in the notice through any other person, such other person also), does not appear before the competent authority or represent his case before it wit in a period of thirty days specified in the SHOW cause notice, the competent authority may proceed to record a finding under this sub-section exparte on the basis of evidence available before it.
(2) Where the competent authority is satisfied that some of the properties referred to in the SHOW cause notice are illegally acquired properties but is not able to identify specifically such properties, then, it shall be lawful for the competent authority to specify the properties which, to the best of its judgment, are illegally acquired properties and record a finding accordingly under sub-section (1) within a period of ninety days.
(3) Where the competent authority records a finding under this section to the effect that any property is illegally acquired property, it shall declare that such property shall, subject to the provisions of this Chapter stand forfeited to the State Government free FROM all encumbrances.
(4) In case the person affected establishes that the property specified in the notice issued under section 58H is not an illegally acquired property and therefore not liable to be forfeited under the
Act, the said notice shall be withdrawn and the proper y shall be released forthwith.
(5) Where any shares in a company stand forfeited to the State
Government under this Chapter, the company shall, notwithstanding anything contained in the Companies Act, 1956 (1 of 1956) or the article of association of the company, forthwith register the State
Government as the transferee of such shares.
58J. Burden of proof.-
In any proceedings under this Chapter, the burden of proving that any property specified in the notice served under section 58H is not illegally acquired property shall be on the person affected.
58K. Fine in lieu of forfeiture.-
(1) Where the competent authority makes a declaration that any property stands forfeited to the State Government under section 58-I and it is a case where the source of only a part of the illegally acquired property has n t been proved to the satisfaction of the competent authority, it shall make an ORDER giving option to the person affected to pay, in lieu of forfeiture, a fine equal to the market value of such part.
(2) Before making an ORDER imposing a fine under sub-section (1), the person affected shall be given a reasonable opportunity of being heard.
(3) Where the person affected pays the fine due under sub-section (1), within such time as may be allowed in that behalf, the competent authority may, by ORDER revoke the declaration of forfeiture under section 58-I and thereupon such property shall stan released.
58L. Procedure in relation to certain trust properties.-
In the case of any person referred to in sub-clause (vi) of clause (b) of section 58B, if the competent authority, on the basis of the information and materials available to it, for reasons to be re orded in writing believes that any property held in trust is illegally acquired property, it may serve a notice upon the author of the trust, or as the case may be, the contributor of the assets out of or by means of which such property was acquired by t e trust and the trustees, calling upon them within a period of thirty days specified in the notice, to EXPLAIN the source of money or other assets out of or by means of which such property was acquired or, as the case may be, the source of money or other assets which were contributed to the trust for acquiring such property and thereupon such notice shall be deemed to be a notice served under section 58H and all the other provisions of this Chapter shall apply accordingly.
Explanation.-For the purposes of this section "illegally acquired property" in relation to any property held in trust, includes-
(i) Any property which if it had continued to be held by the author of the trust or the contributor of such property to the trust would have been illegally acquired property in relation to such author or contributor;
(ii) Any property acquired by the trust out of any contributions made by any person which would have been illegally acquired property in relation to such person had such person acquired such property out of such contributions.
58M. Certain transfers to be null and void.-
Where after the making of an ORDER under sub-section (1) of section 58F or the issue of a notice under section 58H or under section 58L, any property referred to in the said ORDER or notice is transferred by an mode whatsoever, such transfer shall, for the purposes of the proceedings under this Chapter, be ignored and if such property is subsequently forfeited to the State Government under section 58-I, then, the transfer of such property shall be deemed to be null and void.
58N. Constitution of Appellate Tribunal.-
(1) The State Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, constitute an Appellate Tribunal to be called the Appellate Tribunal for Forfeited Property consisting of a Chairman, and such number of other members (being officers of the State Government not below the rank of a Principal Secretary to the Government), as the State Government thinks fit, to be appointed by that Government for hearing appeals against the orders made under section 58F, section 8-I, sub-section (1) of section 58K or section 58L.
(2) The Chairman of the Appellate Tribunal shall be a person who is or has been or is qualified to be a Judge of a High Court.
(3) The terms and conditions of service of the Chairman and other members shall be such as may be prescribed.
(1) Any person aggrieved by an ORDER of the competent authority made under section 58F, section 58-I, sub-section (1) of section 58K or section 58L may, within forty-five days FROM the date on which the ORDER is served on him prefer an app al to the Appellate
Provided that the Appellate Tribunal may entertain an appeal after the said period of forty-five days, but not after sixty days, FROM the date aforesaid if it is satisfied that the appellant was prevented by sufficient cause FROM filing the appeal in time .
(2) On receipt of an appeal under sub-section (1), the Appellate
Tribunal may, after giving an opportunity of being heard to the appellant, if he so desires, and after making such further inquiry as it deems fit, confirm, modify or set aside the ORDER appealed against.
(3) The Appellate Tribunal may regulate its own procedure.
(4) On application to the Appellate Tribunal and on payment of the prescribed fee, the Appellate Tribunal may allow a party to any appeal or any person authorised in this behalf by such party to inspect at any time during office hours, any relevant record and registers of the Appellate Tribunal and obtain a certified copy or any part thereof.
58P. Notice or ORDER not to be invalid for error in description.-
No notice issued or served, no declaration made, and no ORDER passed under this Chapter shall be deemed to be invalid by reason of any error in the description of the property or person mentioned therein if such property or person is identifiable FROM the description so mentioned.
58Q. Bar of jurisdiction.-
No ORDER passed or declaration made under this Chapter shall be appealable except as provided therein and no civil court shall have jurisdiction in respect of any matter which the Appellate Tribunal or any competent authority is empowered by or under this Chapter to determine, and no injunction shall be granted by any court or other authority in respect of any action taken or to be taken in pursuance of any power conferred by or under this Chapter.
58R. Competent Authority and Appellate Tribunal to have powers of civil court.-
The competent authority and the Appellate Tribunal shall have all the powers of a civil court while trying a suit under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (5 of 1908) in respect of the following matters, namely:-
(a) Summoning and enforcing the attendance of any person and examining him on oath;
(b) Requiring the discovery and production of documents;
(c) Receiving evidence on affidavits;
(d) Requisitioning any public record or copy thereof FROM any court or office;
(e) Issuing commissions for examination of witnesses or documents;
(f) Any other matter which may be prescribed.
58 S. Information to competent authority.-
(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being in force, the competent authority shall have power to require any officer or authority of the Central Government or a State Government or local authority to furnish information in relation to such persons, on points or matters as in the opinion of the competent authority will be useful for, or relevant to, the purposes of this Chapter.
(2) Every officer referred to in section 58T may furnish suomotu any information available with him to the competent authority if in the opinion of the officer such information will be useful to the competent authority for the purposes of this Chapter.
58 T. Certain officers to assist Administrator, competent authority and Appellate Tribunal.-
For the purposes of any proceedings under this Chapter, the following officers shall render such assistance as may be necessary to the Administrator appointed unde section 58G, competent authority and the Appellate Tribunal, namely:-
(a) Officers of Police;
(b) Officers of the State Forest Departments;
(c) Officers of the Central Economic Intelligence Bureau;
(d) Officers of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence;
(e) Such other officers as specified by the State Government in this behalf by notification in the Official Gazette.
58U. Power to take possession.-
(1) Where any property has been declared to be forfeited to the State Government under this Chapter, or where the person affected has failed to pay the fine due under sub-section (1) of section 58K within the time allowed therefor under sub-section (3) of that section, the competent authority may ORDER the person affected as well as any other person who may be in possession of the property to surrender or deliver possession thereof to the Administrator appointed under sect on 58G or to any person duly authorised by him in this behalf within thirty days of the service of the order.
(2) If any person refuses or fails to comply with an ORDER made under sub-section (1), the Administrator may take possession of the property and may for that purpose use such force as may be necessary.
(3) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (2), the
Administrator may, for the purpose of taking possession of any property referred to in sub-section (1) requisition the services of any police officer to assist him and it shall be the duty of such officer to comply with such requisition.
58V. Rectification of mistakes.-
With a view to rectifying any mistake apparent FROM record, the competent authority or the Appellate Tribunal, as the case may be, may amend any ORDER made by it within a period of one year FROM the date of the order:
Provided that if any such amendment is likely to affect any person prejudicially and the mistake is not of a clerical nature, it shall not be made without giving to such person a reasonable opportunity of being heard.
58W. Findings under other laws not conclusive for proceedings under this Chapter.-
No finding of any officer or authority under any other law shall be conclusive for the purposes of any proceedings under this
58X. Service of notices and orders.-
Any notice or ORDER issued or made under this Chapter shall be served,-
(a) By tendering the notice or ORDER or sending it by registered post to the person for whom it is intended or to his agent;
(b) If the notice or ORDER cannot be served in the manner provided in clause (a), then, by affixing it on a conspicuous place in the property in relation to which the notice or ORDER is issued or made or on some conspicuous part of the premises in which he person for whom it is intended is known to have last resided or carried on business or personally worked for gain.
58Y. Punishment for acquiring property in relation to which proceedings have been taken under this Chapter.-
Any person who knowingly acquires, by any mode whatsoever, any property in relation to which proceedings are pending under this Chapter shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to five years and with fine which may extend to fifty thousand rupees..