Bills to replace Major Port Trusts Act, Insecticides Act get the green signal

The Hindu Businessline, February 10, 2020

The Cabinet on Wednesday approved Bills to introduce the Major Port Trusts Act, 2020 and the Pesticide Management Act, 2020. The Bills will replace the Major Port Trusts Act, 1963 and the Insecticides Act, 1968.

“The operation of 12 major ports was according to the Major Port Trusts Act, 1963. Things have changed considerably since. Now there are private ports and many States have developed their own ports. Major ports in India are also operating under the public-private partnership (PPP) model. The earlier Act did not have any provisions to resolve disputes between those operating under the PPP model,” Mansukh Mandaviya, Minister of State for Shipping (Independent Charge), said after the Cabinet meeting.

“The Bill, when passed, will empower the port authorities to take many decisions that otherwise require the nod of the Centre. This will enable speedier implementation of decisions and allow the major ports to compete with their upcoming private counterparts,” Mandaviya added.

The Cabinet also the approved the Pesticide Management Bill, 2020. The Bill focuses on ensuring safe and genuine pesticides to farmers. “The new Act will ensure that farmers will get safe pesticides and will be given all information about the products from dealer where he purchases pesticides,” Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Prakash Javadekar said.

To check misinformation, the advertisements of pesticides will be regulated, he added.

Javadekar also said that farmers will be compensated for damage to their crop due to purchase of spurious pesticides. “A fund to compensate farmers will be introduced. It will be accrued from penalties levied for non-compliance with norms of this Act and grants from the Centre,” he said.

Double tax avoidance pact
The Cabinet also approved the protocol for amending the agreement between India and Sri Lanka for avoidance of double taxation and prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income. A Memorandum of Understanding between India and Iceland in the field of Sustainable Fisheries Development also got the Cabinet nod

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