D.B. Lal, J.
1. This is an application under Article 134 (1) (c) of the Constitution of India for a certificate of fitness for appeal to the Supreme Court.
2. The facts of the case are, that a vehicle belonging to the respondent was noticed on 1-2-1976 carrying sandalwood billets which were stated to be smuggled from the forest. The said vehicle was intercepted and subsequently a prosecution case started against the respondent and the Divisional Forest Officer, under Section 71-A of the Karnataka Forest Act, 1963 (hereinafter to be referred to as the Act), confiscated the vehicle. Under Section 71-D an appeal was preferred against the order of confiscation before the Sessions Judge and the said appeal was dismissed. Thereafter, the respondent filed a petition in this Court presumably under Section 397 of the Code of Criminal Procedure. That petition was decided on merit and the order of confiscation was set aside. The present petition is directed against that order of the Court.
3. The learned High Court Government Advocate contended that under Section 71-D (2) the order of the Sessions Judge was final, meaning thereby that no revision was entertainable at the instance of the party before the High Court. According to the learned Counsel this would be an important question of law which need be decided by the Supreme Court. It was also contended that this Court failed to take notice of this provision in Section 71-D and therefore the revision which was not maintainable, was nonetheless permitted to fructify and the order of confiscation was set aside.
4. For deciding an application for leave to appeal to the Supreme Court, the criterion will not be, that the decision of the Court is right or wrong. Rather, the criterion will be, as to whether an important question of law is involved and as to whether an authoritative decision by the Supreme Court is required in the interest of general public. As evident from Section 401 Cr. P.C., the High Court could entertain a revision suo motu, if sufficient facts were brought to its notice, so that the order of the subordinate criminal Court required to be tested on grounds of its correctness, legality or propriety. Even if it is stated that the respondent had no right to file the revision, nevertheless, the High Court was seized of the matter and since it came to the knowledge of the High Court that certain illegality was committed by the Sessions Judge, under Section 401 Cr. P.C., the High Court could exercise its power of revision. The finality attached to the order is restricted to the party and not to a higher Tribunal which is conferred sou motu power of revision under a specific provision of the Code of Criminal Procedure, Therefore, to me it appears that the law is more than clear as laid down in Section 401 and there can be no two opinions. Taking this point in view, it is difficult to find that any important question of law is at all involved. Besides, it cannot be stated that such a question of law is of general importance so that a decision is needed by the Supreme Court.
5. The petition is therefore dismissed.