Explanatory Legislations

Though retrospectivity is not to be presumed and rather there is presumption against retrospectivity, it is open for the Legislature to enact laws having retrospective operation.

Where a statute is passed for the purpose of supplying an obvious omission in a former statute or to ‘explain’ a former statute, the subsequent statute has relation back to the time when the prior Act was passed. The rule against retrospectivity is inapplicable to such legislations as are explanatory and declaratory in nature.”

Zile Singh vs. State of Haryana, (2004) 8 SCC 1.

It could thus be seen, it is material to ascertain the legislative intent. Zile Singh has been subsequently followed in various Judgments, including in the case of Commissioner of Income Tax-I, Ahmedabad v. Gold Coin Health Food Private Limited, (2008) 9 SCC 622.

Hon’ble Justice B.R. Gavai, Ghanashyam Mishra v. Edelweiss Asset Reconstruction Company Limited, [Civil Appeal No. 8129 of 2019].