Lok Sabha passes Jan Vishwas (Amendment of Provisions) Bill, 2023 in Parliament

The Bill aims at giving further boost to Ease of Living and Ease of Doing Business

The Bill proposes to amend 183 provisions to be decriminalized in 42 Central Acts administered by 19 Ministries/Departments

July 27, 2023

The Jan Vishwas (Amendment of Provisions) Bill, 2023 was passed in Lok Sabha here today.The Bill was first introduced in Lok Sabha on 22nd December 2022. Subsequently, it was referred to the Joint Committee of the Parliament. The Joint Committee on the Jan Vishwas (Amendment of Provisions) Bill, 2022 held detailed discussions with all the 19 Ministries/Departments along with Legislative Department and Department of Legal Affairs. The Committee conducted clause-by-clause examination of the Bill through a series of 9 sittings between 09.01.2023 and 17.02.2023. The Committee finally adopted its Report in its sitting held on 13.03.2023.The Report of the Committee has been laid before Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha on 17th March 2023 and 20th March 2023 respectively. The Committee recommended a few more amendments in the Bill. Committee also made 7 general recommendations, out of which, 6 recommendations have been accepted by all the Ministries/Departments concerned.Through The Jan Vishwas (Amendment of Provisions) Bill, 2023, a total of 183 provisions are being proposed to be decriminalized in 42 Central Acts administered by 19 Ministries/Departments. Decriminalization is proposed to be achieved in the following manner: -(i) Both Imprisonment and/or Fine are proposed to be removed in some provisions.(ii) Imprisonment is proposed to be removed and fine retained in few provisions.(iii) Imprisonment is proposed to be removed and Fine enhanced in few provisions.(iv) Imprisonment and Fine are proposed to be converted to Penalty in some provisions.(v) Compounding of offences is proposed to be introduced in few provisions.For effective implementation of the above, the bill proposes measures such as (a) pragmatic revision of fines and penalties commensurate to the offence committed; (b) establishment of Adjudicating Officers; (c) establishment of Appellate Authorities; and (d) Periodic increase in quantum of fine and penaltiesIt is also ensured that degree and nature of punishment is commensurate with the severity of the offence.The benefits of the Amendment Bill are outlined as under:1. The Amendment Bill will contribute to rationalizing criminal provisions and ensuring that citizens, businesses and the government departments operate without fear of imprisonment for minor, technical or procedural defaults.2. The nature of penal consequence of an offence committed should be commensurate with the seriousness of the offence. This bill establishes a balance between the severity of the offence/violation committed and the gravity of the prescribed punishment. The proposed amendments ensure the adherence to law by businesses and citizens, without losing the rigor of the law.3. The criminal consequences prescribed for technical/procedural lapses and minor defaults, clog the justice delivery system and puts adjudication of serious offences on the back burner. Some of the amendments proposed in the Bill are to introduce suitable administrative adjudication mechanisms, wherever applicable and feasible. This would go a long way in reducing undue pressure on the justice system, reduce the pendency of cases and help in a more efficient and effective justice dispensation.4. Decriminalization of provisions which affect citizens and certain categories of government employees will help them live without the fear of imprisonment for minor violations.5. The enactment of this legislation would be a landmark in the journey of rationalizing laws, eliminating barriers and bolstering growth of businesses. This legislation would serve as a guiding principle for future amendments in various laws. Consolidated amendments in various laws with a common objective will save time and cost for both Government and Businesses alike.Ministry/Department-wise List of 42 Acts(Covered under The Jan Vishwas (Amendment of Provisions) Bill, 2023)

Sl. No.Name of the ActsName of Ministries / Departments
 The Agricultural Produce (Grading and Marking) Act, 1937D/o Agriculture, & Farmers Welfare
 The Marine Products Export Development Authority Act, 1972D/o Commerce
 The Rubber Act, 1947
 The Tea Act, 1953
 The Spices Board Act, 1986
 The Legal Metrology Act, 2009D/o Consumer Affairs
 The Cantonments Act 2006D/o Defence
 The Government Securities Act, 2006D/o Economic Affairs
 The High Denomination Banknotes (Demonetization) Act, 1978
 The Public Debt Act, 1944
 The Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016M/o Electronics and Information Technology
 The Information Technology Act, 2000
 The Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1981M/o Environment, Forest and Climate Change
 The Environment Protection Act, 1986
 The Indian Forest Act, 1927
 The Public Liability Insurance Act, 19941
 The Deposit Insurance and Credit Guarantee Corporation Act, 1961D/o Financial Services
 The Factoring Regulation Act, 2011
 The National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development Act, 1981
 The National Housing Bank Act, 1987
 The Payment and Settlement Systems Act, 2007
 The Food Corporations Act, 1964D/o Food & Public Distribution
 The Warehousing Corporation Act, 1962
 The Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940D/o Health & Family Welfare
 The Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006
 The Pharmacy Act, 1948
 The Metro Railways (Operation and Maintenance) Act, 2002M/o Housing & Urban Affairs
 The Press and Registration of Books Act, 1867M/o Information & Broadcasting
 The Cinematography Act, 1952
 The Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995
 The Merchant Shipping Act, 1958M/o Ports, Shipping & Waterways
 The Indian Post Office Act, 1898D/o Posts
 The Boilers Act, 1923Department for Promotion of Industry & Internal Trade
 The Copyright Act, 1957
 The Geographical Indications of Goods Act, 1999
 The Industries (Development and Regulation) Act, 1951
 The Patents Act, 1970
 The Trade Marks Act, 1999
 The Railways Act, 1989M/o Railways
 The Motor Vehicles Act, 1988M/o Road Transport & Highways
 The Prevention of Money-laundering Act, 2002D/o Revenue
 The Collection of Statistics Act, 2008M/o Statistics & Programme Implementation

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