IHC orders FBR to release Palestine ambassador’s vehicle

By: News Desk
Published: 12:27 PM, 20 Aug, 2020
IHC orders FBR to release Palestine ambassador’s vehicle
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The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Thursday suspended the show-cause notice issued by the Federal Bureau of Revenue (FBR) to the Palestine ambassador and ordered the Customs Collector to return the vehicle back to the diplomat, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

Moreover, the court also directed the officials not to take any action against the ambassador until the next hearing.

These orders were passed as IHC Chief Justice Athar Minallah heard a petition filed by Palestine Ambassador Ahmed Jawad A Rabei who challenged the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) show-cause notice issued regarding a duty-exempted luxury vehicle.

In the petition, the ambassador said the show-cause notice was issued despite the fact that the diplomats have the immunity under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations 1961 read with The Diplomatic and Consular Privileges Act 1972. “This notice violates the immunity given under the Convention to the diplomats,” it added.

The petition prayed the court to declare the petitioner and his property immune from the penal jurisdiction of the customs department in light of the Vienna Convention.

It also asked the court to declare the actions of the Customs Department illegal, which were undertaken without consultation of the foreign secretary.

Praying the court to "set aside the impugned notice as it suffers from want of jurisdiction to the extent of the petitioner and his property," the petitioner contended that seizure of the petitioner's vehicle without notice, and without informing the FO secretary, was illegal.