The Government has now notified a new Act Food & Safety Standard Act 2006 replacing the old and ineffective Prevention of Food Adulteration Act.
The new Act is using a multi-level approach of strengthening the monitoring and heavy fines. For example now penalties for adulteration have been enhanced upto a maximum of Rs 10 lakhs compared to just Rs 500/- to Rs 5000/- earlier. Earlier the cases were presented in the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate, which often resulted in delays. Now initially the judicial powers have been given to the Food Commissioner to be specifically appointed in each state. Cases have to be decided in a time bound manner.
However for our health, let us hope (keeping fingers crossed) that the latest legislative changes do work and improve the quality of food that comes to our tables.
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