New act to fight food adulteration in Delhi

Heavy fine and punishment including life imprisonment under the act

jasleen

Jasleen Kaur | May 11, 2011



The state government is gearing up to enforce the new Food Safety & Standard Act 2006 within next three months. The rules under the act have been notified.

Delhi health minister Dr A K Walia said that with enforcement of the new act food adulteration will become almost impossible as it is going to attract heavy fine and punishment including life imprisonment.  A few strict provisions have been included in the act to highlight its deterrent values.

Under the new act, all food business operators will have to get them registered or licensed.  The shopkeepers will also have to apply for registration whereas the other business establishment shall have to get license.

The punishment under this law has been divided into two categories.  In case of sub-standard, misbranded food and in case of misleading advertisement about the food products (not injurious to health), the cases will not go to the court and only fine shall be imposed up to maximum of Rs 10 lakh.

But in case of un-safe food the punishment will be imprisonment up to 7 years with fine of Rs 10 lakh.  In case of death caused due to adulterated food items, the punishment will be 7 years imprisonment and maximum life imprisonment and fine up to Rs 10 lakh.  The new act will have a provision of a compensation of injury or death.

In case of death, compensation will not be less than Rs 5 lakh, and in case of grievous injury, it will not be more than Rs 3 lakh.

The department will be authorized to recall injurious food and punishment will be doubled for subsequent offences.

Walia further added that other penalties include fine up to Rs 2 lakh for selling food not of the quality demanded, up to Rs 5 lakh for sub-standard food, up to Rs 3 lakh for misbranded food and up to Rs 1 lakh for un-hygienic or un-sanitary processing or manufacturing of food.

The department of PFA has been instructed to continue raids against adulterators.  It has been continuing its operations on regular basis.  In April this year 264 samples were lifted across the city out of which 40 were found to be adulterated and four to be mis-branded. Result of 43 samples is still awaited. 32 samples of spices, 31 of milk products, 22 each of pulses, cereals and milk, 18 of edible oil and 17 from eating establishments were lifted.  Apart from this 69 samples of miscellaneous of food items were also lifted.

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