Fines have been correctly imposed for late payment of bed tax: High Court

The high court has upheld the judgment passed by the civil court in July 2012 stating that the fine of Rufiyaa 1.5 million imposed by MIRA on Alliance Management Services for late payment of bed tax is correct. MIRA has fined the company under Section 37 of the Maldives Tourism Act whereby each bed on the cruise liner, M.S. Costa Romantica was fined at the rate of  Rufiyaa 1000.

Alliance Management Services had appealed the decision taken by the civil court in July 2012 stating that under Section 37 of the Maldives Tourism Act, the fine can be imposed on vessels operating in the Maldives and not on foreign tourist vessels that come to Maldives.

However in the high court decree made on 18 July 2014, the court stated that all judges who reviewed the case concur that ‘Tourist Vessel’ as defined in the Maldives Tourism Act is not limited to only vessels operating in Maldives and can be applicable to foreign tourist vessels that come into Maldives as well. It further states that as the appealing party has offered no solid legal basis to assume that foreign tourist vessels cannot be fined for late payment of bed tax, the high court sees no reason to overturn the previous decision taken by the civil court in July 2012.

In addition to this case, over the past week civil court has also passed judgments with regards to 2 more cases lodged by MIRA. Civil court has ordered Adam Naseer (A063674) to pay the lease amount and fine imposed for non-payment of the rent of Sh. Kalaidhoo. This island was leased to Adam Naseer under an agreement between him and the Ministry of Fisheries, Agriculture and Marine Resources. Adam Naseer had failed to pay the rent amount from 16 March 2009 till 21 June 2011 when the agreement was cancelled. He has been ordered to pay Rufiyaa 8,143,257.28 to MIRA within 6 months.

Additionally, civil court has also ordered Hassan Waheed (A050910) of M. Airdawn to pay the fine of Rufiyaa 77,898 imposed on him for late payment of bed tax for his tourist hotel ‘Lucky Hiya Hotel’ for the periods January 2008 and July 2010.

22 Jun 14