1. This is an application for reference filed by the applicant under Section 82B of the Gold (Control) Act, 1968.
2. By order dated 10-10-84 in Appeal No. GC(T) (MAS) 94/80 the Tribunal confirming the finding of the adjudicating authority namely, the Collector of Central Excise and Customs, Madurai, in respect of the contravention found against the appellant, reduced the penalty from Rs. 10,000/- to Rs. 9,000/ under Section 74 of the Gold (Control) Act. The Tribunal has found in its order that there was no evidence to show that the appellant was concerned with the entire quantity of 79 bars of gold under seizure and was concerned only with 9 gold bars valued at Rs. 18,000/-.
3. The learned Counsel, Shri Suganchand Jain submitted that when the original adjudicating authority has found that the applicant was concerned with 79 gold bars under seizure and proceeded to impose a penalty of Rs. 10,000/- the Tribunal consistent with its finding that the appellant was concerned only with 9 gold bars under seizure and not 79 bars, should have proportionately reduced the penalty and so the mere reduction of the penalty by the Tribunal from Rs. 10,000/- to Rs. 9,000/- would not be in accordance with law and this is a question of law meriting the reference to the High Court.
4. I am afraid I cannot accede to the submission of the learned Counsel for the applicant. It is a settled proposition (of law that in respect of an appeal before an appellate authority the whole lis is at large.
When the Tribunal has confirmed the finding of the adjudicating authority with reference to the charge of contravention against the applicant, imposition of penalty would be a matter within the judicial discretion of the Tribunal, and in the instant case the Tribunal has given clear reasons for reducing the penalty of Rs. 10,000/- imposed by the adjudicating authority to Rs. 9,000/-. This imposition of the penalty in exercise of judicial discretion by a statutory Tribunal on the basis of the factual evidence before it would not be a question of law meriting reference to the High Court. In this view of the matter I do not find any substance in the application and the reference application is accordingly rejected.