Up to six months’ imprisonment for publishing certain kinds of export/import info

New Delhi, Feb 5 : The Finance Bill 2022 adds a new section in the Customs Act for the protection of data with a provision for imprisonment for publishing certain kinds of export or import data.

Insertion of new Section 135AA has been prescribed by the Finance Bill after Section 135A of the Customs Act.

“If a person publishes any information relating to the value or classification or quantity of goods entered for export from India, or import into India, or the details of the exporter or importer of such goods under this Act, unless required so to do under any law for the time being in force, he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months, or with fine which may extend to fifty thousand rupees, or with both,” the new Section says.

Nothing contained in this section shall apply to any publication made by or on behalf of the Central government.

“For the purposes of this section, the expression ‘publishes’ includes reproducing the information in printed or electronic form and making it available for the public,” the Section adds.