Nagpur News: Vidarbha Taxpayers Association (VTA) welcomes extension approved by Food Safety & Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), New Delhi of mandatory registration/licence provision by another one year, which is now extended up to February 4, 2014.
From August 5, 2011, the Food Safety and Standards (Licensing and Registration of Food Business) Regulations, 2011 came into force, wherein Clause 2.1.2 stipulated that all Food Business Operators (FBOs) shall have to apply for conversion/renewal of registration/license within one year from the date of notification. However this date was earlier extended by FSSAI vide circular no. 03/02/2012/QAS/FSSAI for six months and now further the same is extended by another one year.
As per the definition, a ‘Food Business Operator’ is any undertaking whether for profit or not and whether public or private, carrying out any of the activities related to any stage of manufacture, processing, packaging, storage, transportation, distribution of food, import and includes food services, sale of food or food ingredients.
All such business establishments, having annual income Rs 12 lakh and above should register and obtain licenses. If the annual income is less than Rs 12 lakh, they only have to register themselves under the Act. The definition is quite broad and several lakhs of small time roadside vegetable vendors, snack makers on foot paths, tea stalls in street corners, etc. can all come under its ambit.
Vidarbha Taxpayers Association (VTA) has been drawing attention of Central as well State Government about lacunas of the Act, which may cause rampant corruption & Inspector Raj.
In this process VTA secretary Tejinder Singh Renu had also met Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of FSSAI, S. N. Mohanty in the presence of S. S. Ghonkrokta, Director (Enforcement) FSSAI, Dr. Madhawan, Deputy Director (Enf-I) FSSAI, Dr. D. S. Yadav, Deputy Director (Enf-II) FSSAI in September last year and demanded extension of this Regulation.
During winter session of Assembly at Nagpur a delegation of VTA led by its Vice President Shrawan Kumar Malu had also met Minister for Food & Drug Administration (FDA) Manohar Naik and submitted memorandum highlighting various provisions of Food Safety & Standards Act, 2006 (FSS Act) being implemented in State through FDA, which is severely threatening closure of existing Food Businesses and also resulting in drastic rise of corruption.
VTA President J. P. Sharma welcomed this extension and express gratitude to FSSAI for the same, however feel that just extension every time is not the solution as this Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006 (FSS Act) applies to whole of India and practically covers all business even slightly related to food or food material, new as well as existing ones.
Tejinder Singh Renu, secretary VTA said “just meetings with FSSAI or FDA shall fail to deliver a solution, FSSAI should organize a seminar and invite all organizations & associations who have so far actively criticized this act and after hearing them take appropriate steps, which should have gradual implementation of act and different yardsticks for existing FBOs, as regulations & rules made under this Act, which should not be implied retrospectively”.