Maharashtra considers life imprisonment for milk adulteration

Minister says existing provisions in law are not deterrent enough to curb adulteration of milk

mumbai Updated: Mar 14, 2018 01:02 IST
Surendra P Gangan
Surendra P Gangan
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,milk adulteration,girish bapat
Minister Girish Bapat said the Centre has given its nod to amend the laws for stricter punishment for adulteration of milk by making the offence non-bailable.(SHUTTERSTOCK)

The Maharashtra government said on Tuesday that it was considering amending the laws to make provision for punishment ranging between three years to life imprisonment for milk adulteration. Food and civil supplies minister Girish Bapat informed the legislative assembly and council on Tuesday that the amendments will be made in Indian Penal Code (IPC) and other related laws once the proposal was approved by the law and judiciary department.

Bapat said that at present there was provision of punishment of six months for people found responsible for milk adulteration. The existing provision in the IPC and other laws including Food Safety and Standards Act 2006 are not deterrent enough to curb the adulteration of milk, he said. Bapat said the Centre has given its nod to amend the laws for stricter punishment for the culprits by making the offence non-bailable.

“We are proposing the punishment ranging between three years to life imprisonment depending on the severity of the involvement. The amendment will be proposed in the IPC once the proposal is approved by the law and judiciary department,” he said.

Bapat admitted that the four mobile testing vans that are in service to curb milk adulteration have failed to effectively perform in Mumbai, Konkan and other parts. He was replying to a calling attention motion moved by Ameet Satam (BJP), Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil (Congress) and others in the lower house. The issue was raised by Kiran Pawaskar (NCP) in the council. Bapat said the government was imparting training to the manufacturers of foods items to avoid the adulteration at source.

The minister informed house that the department held a special surveillance drive on January 16 and 23 across the state and collected random samples of the milk supplied. In Mumbai, 2,700 litres of milk of the 4.62 lakh litres checked at the entry points were found to be sub-standard and the stock was rejected.

First Published: Mar 14, 2018 01:02 IST