200% customs hike for Pakistan imports not applicable retrospectively: SC

A three judge Supreme Court bench has held that the government of India notification for increase in customs for goods from Pakistan will not apply to the midnight of the day prior to the release of the notification. The bench consisted of Justice DY Chandrachud, KM Joseph and Indu Malhotra.

The notification was issued on February 16th, 2019, two days after the Pulwama attack by Pakistan last year. It increased the import duty by 200% and was issued under section 8A of the Customs Tariff Act, 1975.

The present case before the court was an appeal by the Union of India after the High Court of Punjab and Haryana had held that the customs hike would not be applicable to importers who had already presented their bills and had completed the self-assessment procedure before the notification was issued. The order was passed by a Division bench when one of the cement importers had filed a case for release of goods upon which the Customs station at Attari tried to enforce the notification

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