KARACHI: Hearing a contempt of court application moved in an appeal No- CA. H-1191/2023, Bench No.2 of Custom Appellate Tribunal, Karachi resorted to the Section 228 of Pakistan Penal Code and ordered Collector of Custom to appear in person.

The appellant moved the contempt application on ground that its order is not being implemented by the Collectorarte concerned while no stay has been obtained from the High Court by the department.

The CAT bench referred to an observation “by the Islamabad High Court which says that” orders of the tribunal are binding on Custom officials who cannot choose to sit in judgment over such orders or defy the same on the basis that Custom Authorities intend to¬† filed a reference….

The bench said in its order dated 27.6.2024 that In case of non-compliance, which has already caused the intentional insult of interruption in the judicial proceedings, the respondents shall be dealt with under section 228 of Pakistan Penal code and the appropriate proceedings shall be initiated against Collector of Customs Hyderabad.

The Custom Appellate Tribunals are established under Section 194 of the Customs Act 1969. The Chairman and members (Judicial and Technical) are appointed by the Prime Minister and tribunals work under rules framed by the federal government.

The issuance of contempt notices and order of initiating proceedings under section 228 of PPC gave rise to question that whether the tribunal are empowered to take such actions or are exceeding the jurisdiction and powers.