Mumbai: The Reserve Bank Friday said personal appearance before the compounding authority in FEMA cases is not mandatory and has no bearing on the penalty imposed.
"... Appearing for a personal hearing before the compounding authority is optional and the applicant can choose not to appear for it," RBI said to clarify on personal hearing for compounding under Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).
The applicant, RBI said, may enclose full information relating to the case with the application or thereafter and exercise his discretion with regard to appearing for hearing.
It also clarified if the applicant opts for appearing for the personal hearing, RBI would encourage the applicant to appear directly for it rather than being accompanied by legal experts or consultants.
This is because, it said, compounding is only in cases of admitted contraventions.
"...Appearing for or opting out of personal hearing does not have any bearing whatsoever on the amount of penalty involved in the compounding order," it further said.
The clarification came as many applicants interpret a related rule to mean that personal hearing is compulsory and that consultants or advocates must represent them in the personal hearing before the compounding authority.