Case: – Manik Hiru Jhangiani v. State of M.P.; Criminal Appeal No. 3864 of 2023.
The case revolves around the alleged violation of food safety laws, specifically misbranding under the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act, 1954 (PFA) and the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 (FSSA). The appellant, a director of a retail company, challenged the prosecution under PFA after its repeal.
The Appellant faced charges related to misbranding under PFA for an incident that occurred on November 29, 2010. The crucial legal aspects revolved around the repeal of PFA on August 5, 2011, and the subsequent enforcement of FSSA. The prosecution argued that the alleged offense occurred before the repeal, allowing for legal action within the three-year sunset period specified in sub-section (4) of Section 97 of FSSA.
The appellant contended that, with the enforcement of FSSA, misbranding offenses should be governed by its provisions rather than those of the repealed PFA. Section 89 of FSSA, providing an overriding effect over other food-related laws, played a pivotal role.
The Hon’ble Court analysed the inconsistency in penalties for misbranding under PFA (imprisonment and fine) and FSSA (monetary penalty only). It held that Section 89 of FSSA prevails in cases of inconsistency, providing clarity on which law applies. Thus, if an offense falls under both PFA and FSSA, the latter will prevail due to the overriding effect of Section 89.The judgment also highlighted the three-year limitation for taking cognizance under FSSA for offenses committed under PFA before its repeal.

Author of this article:
Adv. Ravish Bhatt,
Partner, R&D Law Chambers,
Dual Qualified Lawyer Solicitor | International Tax Affiliate

Connect with Mr. Bhatt on Linkedin:

  • Readers should contact their attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular legal matter. No reader or user should act or refrain from acting on the basis of information written above without first seeking legal advice from qualified law practitioner.