Finally, chemical weapons bill gets parliament nod

August 30th, 2012 - 6:59 pm ICT by IANS  

Manmohan Singh New Delhi, Aug 30 (IANS) Amid continuing din over the allocation of coal blocks, parliament approval was Thursday accorded to a bill to amend the Chemical Weapons Convention Act which forbids the transfer of specified toxic chemicals from and to a country which is not party to the instrument.

Minister of State for Chemicals and Fertilisers Srikant Jena moved the bill amid massive uproar in the Lok Sabha with the opposition NDA raising slogans demanding resignation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh over alleged irregularities in coal block allocations.

The Chemical Weapons Convention (Amendment) Bill, 2012, part of India’s international obligation, has already been approved by the Rajya Sabha.

As part of its commitment, India has already destroyed 1,000 tonnes of chemicals in 2007 which could be used in weapons.

“No person shall transfer to, or receive from, a state which is not a party to the convention, any toxic chemical,” says the bill.

The bill seeks to amend the Chemical Weapons Convention Act, 2000, which was enacted to give effect to the convention on the prohibition of the development, production, stockpiling and use of chemical weapons and on their destruction.

India had signed the convention Jan 14, 1993.

The act enables the centre to appoint officers of the national authority, set up by the government to implement the convention, to be enforcement officers.

The amendment seeks to confer upon the central government the power to appoint “any of its officers” as an enforcement officer.

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