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The Rajasthan Assembly passed the Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill 2021 to ensure stricter punishment for those engaged in adulteration of food and medicine.

Post amendment, those engaged in adulteration of food would be punishable with a fine of Rs. 50,000/- as well as would have to undergo prison time that may be for a period of 3 years to life imprisonment, as food adulteration will now be treated as a cognizable and non-bailable offence.

Section 59 of the Food Safety & Standards Act, 2006 deals with punishment for unsafe food. This bill is expected to help food safety officers and drug inspectors, apart from putting into perspective several levels of food and drug adulteration and the punishment that are associated with the same.

Section 272 to 276 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) deal with offences associated with adulteration in food, drinks, drugs and medicine. All such offences are currently non-cognizable and bailable.

Minister for Urban Development & Housing (UDH), Shanti Dhariwal stated that the punishment laid out under IPC for engaging in adulteration of food is outdated and that it was absolutely essential for the Supreme Court to step in and ensure that the punishment for the offence is brought at par with the Central Acts.

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