"Consequently, Section 9A for the FTDR Act, is to be understood an enabling provision empowering imposition of 'quantitative restrictions' after following the procedure in the situations referred to therein. However it does not limit and restrict the expans and power of the Central Government to prohibit, regulate or restrict imports of goods in terms of Section 3(2) of the FTDR Act. As a sequitur, it has to be held that notwithstanding Section 9A, the Central Government continues and has authority to impose quantitative restrictions by an order under Section 3(2) of the FTDR Act. Principle of Lex specialis derogat legi generali, therefore, is not applicable to the case in hand"
The bench further observed that Section 9A is not a provision which incorporates or transposes paragraph (1) of Article XI into the domestic law either expressly or by necessary implication.
"Section 9A has to be interpreted as an escape provision when the Central Government i.e. the Union of India may escape the rigours of paragraph (1) of Article XIX of GATT-1994. Section 9A is not a provision which incorporates or transposes paragraph (1) of Article XI into the domestic law either expressly or by necessary implication. To hold to the contrary, we would be holding that the Central Government has no right and power to impose 'quantitative restrictions' except under Section 9A of the FTDR Act. This would be contrary to the legislative intent and objective. Section 9A of the FTDR Act does not elide or negate the power of the Central Government to impose restrictions on imports under sub-section (2) to Section 3 of the FTDR Act."
Holding thus, the bench dismissed the writ petition while upholding the impugned notifications.
Case name: UNION OF INDIA vs. AGRICAS LLP
Case no: TRANSFER PETITION (CIVIL) NOS. 496-509 OF 2020
Coram: Justices AM Khanwilkar, Dinesh Maheshwari and Sanjiv Khanna