The Rajya Sabha on 28 April 2016 passed the Industries (Development and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2015. The bill seeks to amend the Industries (Development and Regulation) Act, 1951.
With this, both the houses of parliament passed the bill. Lok Sabha passed the bill on 10 December 2015 after it was introduced by Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, Nirmala Sitharaman.
It proposes to bring industries engaged in the manufacture of potable alcohol under the exclusive control of States in all respects.
Now, the bill will be sent to the President for his assent.
Key Features of the Amendment Bill
• The1951 Act provides for development and regulation of certain industries including metallurgical, telecommunications, transportation, fermentation (which includes production of alcohol) among others.
• The 1st schedule of the Act includes all industries that are regulated under the Act. The Bill amends the schedule to exclude production of alcohol for potable purposes from the ambit of the Act.
However, the Union Government will continue to be responsible for formulating policy and regulating foreign collaboration for all products of fermentation industries, including industrial and potable alcohol.
Supreme Courts 1997 Judgment
With this passage, the Union Government conformed to the Supreme Court order in the Bihar Distillery versus Union of India case. The Supreme Court in its judgement dated 20 January 1997 demarcated the regulation of production of alcohol between centre and states. It held that where the removal or clearance is for industrial purposes, the levy of excise duty and all other control should be with the Union Government.
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Where: Rajya Sabha
When: 28 April 2016