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Antiquities (Export Control) Act, 1947

ACT NO. XXXI OF 1947

An Act to control the export of antiquities

WHEREAS it is expedient to make better provision for controlling the export of objects of antiquarian or historical interest or significance;

            It is hereby enacted as follows:–

  1. Short title and extent. (1) This Act may be called the Antiquities (Export Control) Act, 1947.

(2)        It extends to the whole of Pakistan.

  1. Interpretation. In this Act, unless there is anything repugnant in the subject or context,–

(a)        “antiquity” includes—

(i)         any coin, sculpture, manuscript, epigraph, or other work of art or craftsmanship.
(ii)        any article, object or thin detached from a building or cave,
(iii)               any article, object or thin illustrative of science, art, crafts, literature, religion, customs, morals or politics in bygone ages,
(iv)              any article, object or thin declared by the central Government by notification in the official gazette to be an antiquity for the purposes of this act,—
which has been in existence for not less than one hundred years;

(b)               “export” means export from Pakistan by sea, land or air.

  1. Prohibition of export. No person shall export any antiquity except under the authority of a license granted by the Central Government.
  2. Application of Act VIII of 1878. All antiquities the export of which is prohibited under section 3 shall be deemed to be goods of which the export has and all the provisions of that Act shall have effect accordingly, except that, the provisions of section 183 of that Act notwithstanding, any confiscation authoirsed under that act shall be made, unless the Central Government, on application to it in such behalf, otherwise directs.
  3. Penalty and procedure. (1) If any person exports or attempts to export an antiquity in contravention of section 3, he shall, without prejudice to any confiscation or penalty to which he may be liable under the provisions of the sea Customs Act, 1878 as applied by section 4, be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to one month, or with fine which may extend to five thousand rupees, or with both.

(2)        No court shall take cognizance of an offence punishable under this section except upon complaint in writing made by an officer generally or specially authorised in this behalf by the central Government, an no court inferior to that of Magistrate of the first class shall try an such offence.

  1. Power to determine whether or not an article is an antiquity. If any question arises whether any article, object or thing is or is not an antiquity for the purposes of this Act, it shall be referred to the director of archaeology in Pakistan, and his decision thereon shall be final.
  2. Power to make rules. (1) The Central Government may, by notification in the official Gazette, make rules to carry out the purposes of this Act.

(2)        In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, such rules may prescribe the procedure for granting licenses for the export of antiquities, and fix the fees payable on applications therefore.

  1. Protection of action taken under this Act. No suit, prosecution or other legal proceeding shall lie against any person for anything in good faith done or intended to be done under this act.
  2. Application of other laws not barred. The provisions of this act shall be in addition to, and not in derogation of, the provisions of the Ancient Monuments Preservation Act, 1904, or any other law for the time being in force.
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