In Today’s News:
- Fugitive Economic Offenders Act.
1. Fugitive Economic Offenders Act
A news item related to Vijay Mallya who was declared the first Fugitive Economic Offender of India in 2019.
(Note: The news is a piece of political news which is not relevant for the exam)
Prelims GS – Governance
(Note: Very important article for the exam.)
Fugitive Economic Offenders Act:
- Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2018 has been enacted for effective action against economic offenders fleeing Indian jurisdiction.
- It provides for attachment and confiscation of property of fugitive economic offenders and disentitles them from defending any civil claim.
- It is an Act to provide for measures to deter fugitive economic offenders from evading the process of law in India by staying outside the jurisdiction of Indian courts, to preserve the sanctity of the rule of law in India, and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.
Features of the Act:
- “Fugitive economic offender” means any individual against whom a warrant for arrest in relation to a Scheduled Offence has been issued by any Court in India, who—
(i) has left India so as to avoid criminal prosecution; or
(ii) being abroad refuses to return to India to face criminal prosecution
- “Scheduled Offence” means an offense specified in the Schedule, if the total value involved in such offense or offenses is one hundred crore rupees or more(100 crore rupees or more).
- To declare a person an FEO, an application will be filed in a Special Court (designated under the Prevention of Money-Laundering Act, 2002) containing details of the properties to be confiscated, and any information about the person’s whereabouts. The Special Court will require the person to appear at a specified place at least six weeks from the issue of notice. Proceedings will be terminated if the person appears.
- The Act allows authorities to provisionally attach properties of an accused, while the application is pending before the Special Court.
- Upon declaration as an FEO, properties of a person may be confiscated and vested in the central government, free of encumbrances (rights and claims in the property).
- The Special Court may confiscate properties of an FEO which are proceeds of crime, Benami properties, or any other properties. These properties may be in India or abroad.
- Further, the FEO or any company associated with him may be barred from filing or defending civil claims.
Click here to view the official act pdf.
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