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The Sugar-Cane Act, 1934

An Act no. 15 of 1934 was short titled as ‘The Sugar-Cane Act, 1934’. The Act was enacted with the object for regulating the prices of Sugar Cane which are to be used in the Sugar factories. It was observed expedient to assure fair prices to sugar canes growers by regulating the same as aforesaid. After independence, it was observed that the Agricultural Produce Market Ordinance, 1978’s applicability was not excluded by this Act of 1934. The Act was enacted during the British rule and it was originally extended to the whole of Pakistan, however in the year 1950 the provisions of the Act was extended to the entire territories of India however, in the year 1956 by the Adaptation of Laws (No. 3) Order, 1956 the territories which comprised in Part- B States prior to the 1st November, 1956.

Section 3 of the Act sought to declare the area as controlled area for the purpose of the Act. Such declaration to be made by the State Government by publishing notification in the Official Gazette in respect of any area, which is to be notified in the same notification. Further, the State Government is also empowered to fix minimum prices for purchasing of sugar canes in the aforesaid declared controlled area, if such sugar cane is intended to purchase for using them in the sugar factories. Even there can be prohibition of common purchasing of sugar cane in any such controlled area which are intended to use in any such factory. However, the State Government while notifying such prohibition can also direct that such sugar cane can be purchased in such controlled areas only from the grower of the sugar cane or from any licensed persons by the State Government to act as a purchasing agent. While declaring controlled areas and fixing minimum prices under the aforesaid provisions, the State Government is required to publish a draft of concerned notifications in the Official Gazette within the specified period of 30 days before those notifications published. Such draft publications should also contain a date on which such draft will be taken for consideration and there will be considered any objections or suggestions in respect thereto.

The Act makes penal provisions under section 5 thereof. It is provided that if any person purchases any sugar can for the purpose of using the same in the sugar factories, from the controlled area, as aforesaid, at the less prices than that which was fixed by the State Government as minimum price for such purchase then such person will be held guilty under this Act. And the punishment under this Act is provided in the form of fine which maximum given as 2000 INR. Similarly penal provisions is also made in respect of the breaching of what provided under notification of the State Government prohibiting purchase of sugar cane from the persons other than from the grower of the sugar canes and from the licensed persons as aforesaid. Moreover, the Court taking cognizance of any such offence under this Act, should first satisfy that there is a complaint made from the District Magistrate or by or from its order or authority.

Section 7 of the Act empowers the State Government concerned to make rules under this Act. Such rules to be more specifically consistent with and also for carrying out the object and purposes of this Act. Similarly, the same should also provided for matter enumerated under subsection (2) of the said section, including provisions to carry out inquiries being preliminary under section 3 of the Act as aforesaid, provisions to establish an advisory committees for the purpose of administration of this Act, provisions as to issuance of licences to purchasing agents, provisions of organisation of growers of sugar canes, provisions of authorities for performance of any functions under this Act or the rules made under this Act and provisions as to maintenance of records, registers, etc. Also while making such rules the State Government should also provide for penalties of violations thereof, if the Act dose not make any penal provisions in that behalf. Moreover, section 8 makes State Government empower to make rules as factories to which such provisions of this Act will not apply.

by Faim Khalilkhan Pathan.