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agriculture


Agriculture Legal
1. Tenancy Reforms.
2. Ceiling on Land Holdings.
3. The laws relating to Gramdan and Bhoodan.


Abolition of the Intermediaries
The intermediary system included various types of interests between the state and the actual cultivator. It varied from the absolute owner of the land that was the Zamindar in Bengal and other permanently settled areas to the land holder, having a grant of revenue or a portion of it in respect of a plot of land. These intermediary interests took too little interest in the development of agriculture through sustained investment and organized production, with the result that agriculture became stagnant and productivity deteriorated. All the measures taken for the protection of the actual cultivators were ineffective and often went against their interests.

Therefore the main step in the agrarian legislation in the country that followed 1947 was to prepare the ground for the abolition of the intermediary tenures to bring the actual cultivator into direct relationship, with the State. In pursuance of this policy, the state formulated legislative measures for the abolition of such tenures and by 1955, necessary steps were taken in all the states. The implementation of these measures has since been completed practically all over the country.

Tenancy Reforms
Whereas only about 40 per cent of the area of the country was under different intermediary tenurial systems, a major part was under the Rayatwari System with no intermediary between the State and the land-holder. The Rayatwari System was prevalent in Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. In the Rayatwari, also different layers of intermediary interests began to emerge consequently as the right of ownership was recognized in these areas. The fact that land could be held even if not cultivated by a person and that the land in itself was becoming a valuable economic asset with the increasing economic and political stability, encouraged the land- owners in the Rayatwari areas to lease out their land. Unlimited rights for acquisition and the opportunity to lease out the land resulted in large areas being held on lease by a section of the society. The land owners acted as money-lenders also, leading to cumulative increase in the indebtedness of the tenants who ultimately lost their property in lieu of loans they could not repay. Thus the tenancy relationship that, arose between the landlord and the tenant in the Rayatwari areas was in no way less exploitable than the tenure that prevailed in the Zamindari areas. This sort of situation called for necessary legislation to protect the interests of the weaker sections.

The security of tenure is one of the basic problems that, cover the landlord-tenant relationship. In the Zamindar areas, the erosion of the rights of the actual cultivator was an immediate process following the permanent settlement. The actual cultivators were treated as tenants and more often at will. In the Rayatwari areas the weakness of the tenants was enhanced by their indebtedness to the landlord in most of the cases, with the result that the tenants became too weak and their position became very insecure. To ensure the security of tenure to the tenants, the early steps taken were to give them occupancy status on the condition of completing a given number of years stay on the same land. This approach resulted in a greater insecurity in the beginning, as the landlords tried to ensure that no tenant could claim such continuity on the same plot of land for the given period. In the Rayatwari areas, the concept of protection to the tenants came rather slowly, with the Malabar Tenancy Act, and the Bombay Tenancy Act (later replaced by the Bombay Tenancy and Agricuitural Lands Act, 1949). However, after Independence, the principles contained in these early legislative measures ,were widely adopted with greater emphasis on the security of tenure. The security of tenure has three essential elements

  • That the ejectment of a tenant should not take place except in accordance with the provisions of the law
  • That the land may be resumed by the owner, if at all for personal cultivation only and
  • That in the event of resumption, the tenant is to be assured of a minimum tenanted area in his possession

Under the tenancy reform measures the law provides for conferment of the ownership right on the tenants in respect of the non-resumable areas in Andhra Pradesh (Telangana area), Assam, Gujarat, Maharashtra, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Manipur, Orissa and Tripura. The right of pre-emption is given to the tenants in Andhra Pradesh (Andhra area). In Haryana and Punjab, the tenants of landlords other than small landlords, who have a minimum period of six years continuous possessions of the tenanted land can purchase ownership rights for such, land subject to the 'permissible limit'. In Rajasthan, the tenant of khudkashi or a sub-tenant in respect of the land other than certain specified categories, can purchase ownership rights for which an application has to be made within a specified period from the commencement of the law. In Uttar Pradesh all Assamis and Adivasis have been admitted to sirdari rights with the right to acquire bhoomidari right on the payment of an amount to the state or to the Gaon Sabha, as the case may be. There are no provisions for enabling the tenants to purchase the land or for conferring ownership on them ,in the States of Bihar and Tamil Nadu.

Homestead Tenancy
Broadly speaking, homesteads under two categories organizationally. . In most parts of India, the village system with conglomerated housing of all the people of the village exists. In some areas, specially on the western coast and in the eastern parts of India, houses are often built on the cultivated land and people live scattered.

Homestead-tenancy problems arise mostly in the case of the latter type. Protection against eviction of a homestead tenant has been a basic provision in most of the tenancy laws, with the right of pre-emption given to the homestead-dweller in case the land-owner wants to sell the land. The legislative provisions in the Vidarbha and Marathwada regions of Maharashtra and in the Kutch area of Gujarat are on these lines. Some states have gone a step further and have provided for the optional right to purchase the house sites by the homestead-dwellers. The Karnataka Land Reforms Act and the Kerala Land Reforms Act are examples. The West Bengal Acquisition and Settlement of homestead Land Act also provides the homestead-dwellers with the optional right to purchase homesteads. In the states of Bihar, Gujarat, Jammu and Kashmir, Tamil Nadu, Orissa and in Pondicherry and Dadra and Nagar Haveli the law provides for thw outright ownership to the homestead -dwellers, providing them with the status of tenants and this is indistinguishable from ownership rights. Andhra Pradesh has recently promulgated an ordinance conferring ownership to homestead dwellers. This was later replaced by an Act. Though homesteads are largely in the abadi adequate protection to individual owners has been given in the laws of Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Saurashtra area of Gujarat.

Bhoomdan and Gramdan Acts
The Bhoomdan Movement started in the early 1960s spread all over the country as a movement to collect the donations of land for distribution among the landless. Acharya, Vinobha Bhave initiated this movement to meet the challenge posed by the requirements of the landless people through the willing cooperation of the rich land-owners in the true Gandhian spirit. For the collection of land that was donated and for distribution among the eligible categories of persons, the movement had to get legislative sanction and approval of the State and a series of legislative measures followed on the principles laid down in the movement. Most of the states have enacted legislation and framed necessary rules to facilitate the movement.

Often, committees are set up for acquiring holdings, administering and transferring property, both movable and immovable, and for entering into contracts. The land vested in the Committee is not liable to be attached or to be bold in the execution of a decree or order of a civil court. Bhoomdan lands held by the committees are exempted from the ceiling laws. Over 18,00,000 hectares of land was collected in Bhoomdan in various states, but a major part of the land, so collected, remains undistributed owing to reasons, including legal difficulties, poor quality of the land, etc.

Land Management

While the land-reform measures, such as the abolition of the intermediaries, the regulation of tenancy relationship and the ceiling on holdings attempt to rationalize the agrarian structure and the land-man relationship, a dynamic approach towards the reorganization of agricultural operations is essential for agricultural progress. A number of legislative measures have been taken to facilitate proper land use and land management. The consolidation of holdings is probably one of the major steps in this direction. The Jammu and Kashniir land Act has since been suspended pending revision thereof. Consolidation of holding. Owing to various socioeconomic factors that have operated over a long period, agricultural holdings in the country have become greatly fragmented and dispersed, with the result that an average farmer has to spend much time and resources without realizing even the economy obtainable from a small holding.

The fragmentation of a holding aggravates the already-acute problem of small holdings in the country. The consolidation of holdings offers a solution to the problem of fragmentation by regrouping the scattered plots within a holding into a minimum number of blocks. Originally the consolidation of holdings was tried on a voluntary basis with legislative backing. These earlier measures were started as early as the 1920s. But as the consolidation made slow progress under voluntary participation by the land-holders, it was thought necessary that some element of compulsion should be employed.

Recent legislative measures on the consolidation of holdings rely on some degree of compulsion, as can be seen in the Bombay Prevention of Fragmentation and Consolidation of Holdings Act, 1948, the Punjab Holdings (Consolidation and prevention of Fragmentation) Act, 1949 and in the U.P. Consolidation of Holdings Act, 1953. Under these Acts, a state government declares by a notification its intention to make a scheme for the consolidation of holdings in a specified village or villages or parts thereof. The scheme prepared by a consolidation officer is modified. If necessary, in the light of the objections received. After finalization, the scheme is published by the Governor, and the action to consolidate land is taken thereafter. Once the land is consolidated, it cannot be partitioned without the permission of the Collector. The consolidation laws, besides providing for the consolidation of small and scattered holdings, foster an overall rational management of land in a village by making suitable allocations for social requirements. The Uttar Pradesh Consolidation of Holdings Act, 1963, the Rajasthan Holdings (Consolidation and prevention of Fragmentation) Act, 1954, the Madhya Pradesh Land Revenue Code, 1959, the Jammu and Kashmir Consolidation of Holdings Act, 1960, the Bihar Consolidation Holdings and Prevention of Fragmentation Act, 1966, the Assam Consolidation of Holdings Act, 1960, the Andhra Pradesh Prevention of Fragmentation and Consolidation Act , the Himachal Pradesh Consolidation of Holdings Act are some of the main legislative measures that have gone into the statute book. Upto the end of 1973-74 the total area of 35,622 thousand hectares has been consolidated. This work has been practically completed in Punjab and Haryana and is expected to be completed in UP in the Fifth Plan.

The first attempt to prevent further fragmentation was made in Maharashtra in 1947. The Bombay Prevention of Fragmentation and Consolidation of Holdings Act authorized the government to fix the area that could be profitably cultivated in a seperate block called 'standard area' and any piece of land below this is called a fragment. The transfer or partition of land which will result in fragmentation is prohibited. Similiar legislative measures for prevention of fragmentation is prohobited. Similar measures have been enacted in Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Karnataka, Orissa, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, and the union territory of Delhi. The legislation has not been in force in some of the states.

Improvement of Agriculture Production

Cultivation of fallow and wasteland. It is important to bring under cultivation the extensive areas of land shown as cultivable waste for increasing agricultural production. Extensive areas of land require substantial investment for reclamation before it is made really cultivable. Some states have enacted laws for the reclamation of wasteland. Bihar, Punjab, Delhi, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan (Ajmer area) had provisions for this purpose. Under the provisions of such Acts, the state, Governments can declare any area as "reclamation area" and acquire it for reclamation and improvement. Some of the Acts also provide for the establishment of Land Development Boards. In Maharashtra, Boards have been established for the reclamation of khar and khojan land. In Madhya Pradesh, the Madhya Pradesh Reclamation of Land (Eradication of Kans) Act, 1948; Eradication Act; and Bhopal State Kans Eradication Act were enforced in Mahakaushal, Madhya Bharat and Bhopal regions, respectively for the reclamation of lands infested with kans by the Tractor Units for the Central Tractor Organisation so long as the Central Tractor Organization was engaged in this operation. The above Acts have since been repeated and the Madhya Pradesh Tractor dwara Tori Gai Bhoomian pur Asudhorslulka Adhiniam, 1972 has been introduced only for the recovery of these tractorization charges by way of betterment levy from the cultivators for whom the Central Tractor Organization worked till 1958. The East Punjab Agricultural Pests, Diseases and Noxious Weeds Act, 1949, was amended in 1951, and again in 1969. Under this Act, the cost of measures carried out shall be recoverable from each occupier of such area in such proportion as may be determined by the state Government on demand of such payment or it shall be recoverable as arrears of land revenue.

The Bihar soil and Water Conservation and Land Development Ordinance was promulgated in 1970 for the preparation and execution of soil and water-conservation plans, including the plan for land development allocation of damage by floods and drought, control of grazing for prevention of soil erosion, reclamation of waste land and protection of reservoirs against sedimentation. To promote agricultural production, the Kerala Land Development Act, 1964, and the Kerala Land Utilization Order, 1987, and the Kerala Irrigation Works (Execution by Joint Labour) Act, 1967, were brought forward. The Kerala Land Development Act, 1964 deals with the problems of the preparation and execution of land development and soil-improvement measures and the prevention of soil erosion and reclamation of wasteland. The Kerala Land Utilization Order, 1967, besides providing for the cultivation of specified crops by a land-holder, makes provisions to prevent land from being kept fallow. The Kerala Irrigation Works (Execution by Joint labour) Act, 1967, provided for works connected with irrigation, flood control, drainage, etc. to be done by joint effort. There is provision for directing the defaulting proposition, if any, to execute any portion of the work or to pay for any portion of the cost of work. The application of the Act is primarily to get cultivation in Kuttard and other Padasikhauram when dewatering can be done only as a joint effort. For the promotion of agricultural production, the Karnataka Government have given statistics in their work.

  • The Insecticides Act, 1968 and the Insecticides Rules, 1971.
  • The Kamataka Cotton Control Act, 1974, and Rules and Notifications thereunder.
  • The Seeds Act, 1966 and the Seed.nules, 1968.
  • The Kamataka Land Improvement Act, 1966 under the Karnataka Land Improvement Rules, 1962.
  • The Land Utilization (Control Order, 1957) with the state Government's notification.
  • The Kamataka Agricultural Pests and Diseases Act, 1968 and the Kamataka Agricultural Pests and Diseases Rules, 1971.

In 1969, the West Bengal Government enacted the West Bengal 'Utilization of Land for the Production of Food Crops Act, 1969, to provide for the requisitioning of land with a view to utilizing it better for the production of good crops in the state. In order to provide for the development of the state through the area-based development programme for increasing agricultural and allied production, the West Bengal Comprehensive Development Act, 1974 was enacted.

Use of improved seeds and manures. The West Bengal State had improvingly enacted legislation for promoting the use of improved seeds and for regulating the quality of seeds that are used. It suggested to use only improved varieties of seeds stored by authorized agents. A legislation on similar lines is in operation in Act, 1974 also aims at 1969. Crops, grass crops and comprehensive seed certification of improved varieties and the enforcement of seed-control programme of all seeds sold through the commercial channel for sowing purposes. Under Section 3 of the Act, the Central government has constituted a Central Seeds Committee to advise the central aud State government on matters arising from the administration of this Act and to carry out other functions associated to it by or under the Act. This Committee is assisted by the various subcommittees at the Central level and a State sub-committee at a state level in the discharge of its functions. The seeds Act of 1966 was further amended in 1972 by the Seeds (Amendment) Act, 1972 to bring jute seed within the purview of the Act and also to provide for the establishment of a central Seeds Certification Board to advise the Central Government and the State Governments on all matters relating to seed Certification. Since the inception of the Act, the Central Government bulbs, rhizomes, roots, edible oilseeds and seeds. In consultation with the Central Seeds Committee have notified in the official gazette under Section 5 of the Act, 322 varieties of more than 50 Crops by the end of June 1975 for various regions of the country and have prescribed the minimum limits of germination and purity of seeds of notified kinds and varieties. Legislative measures to rectify the various malpractices in marketing such as the mixing of different varieties of cotton and the mixing of foreign substances in cotton were taken up as early as 1329.

The legislation has undergone several changes over the century and has become more comprehensive. The Cotton Transport Act was passed by the Government of India in 1923 and it empowered the state governments to restrict the import of inferior cotton with seed and cotton waste into the areas growing, superior cotton and to maintain the quality and the reputation of the latter. The Act covers the major cotton-growing states, such as Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, and the main cotton-growing areas,within the states are declared as protected . Cotton Ginning and Pressing Factories Act, 1925 was complementary to the Cotton Transport Act. To prevent malpractices, the 1925, Act makes it obligatory on the part of the ginning and pressing factories to maintain a record of cotton ginned in the factories. The Act, however, did not provide for the licensing of cotton ginning and pressing factories.

The governments of Gujarat, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh have amended the Central Acts applicable to their states, making the licensing of ginning and pressing factories obligatory. Similarly, suitable measures have been taken by almost all the cotton-growing states. In actual practice, the Cotton Transport Act and the Cotton Ginning and Pressing Factories Act were aimed more at maintaining the purity of cotton seeds in the cultivators field. Therefore, the supplementary legislation was found necessary. The governments of Gujarat, Maharashtra and Karnataka have passed the Cotton Control Act which specifies the types of cotton to be grown in controlled areas and prohibited the cultivation of any other variety or varieties of cotton or the mixing of one variety with another or trading in prohibited areas, so controlled. In Punjab, the same objective was achieved through the Punjab Improvement of Seeds and Seedlings Act. In Andhra Pradesh, the object of Cotton Control Act was secured by notifying the orders under the Hyderabad Cotton Control and Transport Act. To protect a very large number of illiterate farmers against the malpractices of the trades in fertilizers, it was considered essential by the Government of India to regulate the trade in fertilizers and to enforce quality control.

The Central government promulgated in May 1957 a fertilizers (Control) Order, 1957, under Clause 111 of the Essential Commodities Act, 1955. The law envisaged the statutory control of the prices of three fertilizers, namely ammonium sulphate, urea and calcium ammonium nitrate; provided for the registration of dealers in fertilizers; and for restrictions on the specifications of fertilizers in relation to the maximum and minimum of various important constituents. Under the provisions of the fertilizers (Control) Order, 1957, powers for fixing the prices of fertilizers vest with the Government of India and the State Governments have been authorized to fix the price at which the fertilizers mixture may be sold by a manufacturer or a dealer. The Central Government also promulgated the fertilizers Movement Control Order, 1973, in May 1973 under Clause IV of the Essential Commodities Act, 1955, to ensure the equitable distribution of fertilizers in various states and to stop the unauthorized inter-state movement of fertilizers. This Order prohibits the inter-state movement of fertilizers, except by manufacturers listed in the schedule to the Order, by the Food Corporation of India, central housing Corporation, State Warehousing Corporation or in accordance with the authority of the Central Government or the states.

Apart from these positions, most of the states, viz., Bihar, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Gujarat,Assam, Haryana, Punjab, Orissa, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh have amended their Municipal Acts making obligatory on the part of the Municipal committees to adopt competing as a method of refuse disposal.

Soil and water conservation, in order to prevent soil deterioration owing to erosion, most of the states have enacted legislation, empowering their governments to take up early antisoil-erosion measures.

Legislative measures dealing with soil and water conservation have been passed in all the states, except Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Nagaland and Tripura. Among the Union Territories, the Land Development Schemes Regulations, 1963, is in force in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. In other Union Territories, the question of enacting suitable legislation is in various stages of examination and consideration. In many states, there are other Acts which have an indirect bearing on the subject of soil and water conservation dealing with the preservation and protection of forests, etc.

Command and Development Programme

An integrated area development programme is being taken up in selected irrigation commands in various states. The programmne inter alia includes on-farm developments including the consolidation of holdings, boundary alignment, land- levelling, construction of field channels, field drains, etc. in command area of irrigation projects. It will he necessary for the state governments to provide legislative support for the implementation of the programme to cover the difficulties which may arise. The Rajasthan government has already enacted the Rajasthan Colonisation Amendment Act, 1974 (Act No. XXHI of 1974) under which the allottees and the tenants can be directed to carry out land development work at their own cost as per plans and specifications approved by the Project Officer. The Government of Madbya Pradesh is also considering the issue of Madhya Pradesh Bhoomi Sudhar Yojna (sanshodhan Adhyadesh, 11)75. The approval of the President has been conveyed by the Ministry of Home affairs to the state government on 11 June 1975. Similar enactment may come up in other states also in due course.

Irrigation. Provision has been made in a number of ,states for constructing, improving irrigation works. The legislative measures passed in Assam, Bihar, Karnataka, Orissa Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra provide for the irrigation works. The policy of entrusting the maintenance of small irrigation works to the Panchayati Raj organizations has been accepted by the states of Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Jammu and Kashmir, Tamil Nadu, Madhya Pradesh, Orissa, Karnataka, Kerala, Punjab, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, and in some other states, the implementation is under way.

The Kerala Irrigation Works (Execution by Joint Labour) Act, 1967, is meant to facilitate the execution of certain works connected with irrigation, flood control and drainage under the Act. The officer authorized by the government is empowered to deviate from any Padasikbaram for paddy cultivation on the application of one or two proprietors and to recover the cost thereof from all the proprietors. With the increasing exploitation of ground-water resources for irrigation, the need for regulating such exploitation within the limit of annual ground-water recharge in different regions of the country was felt. As there existed no enactment on the subject, a Model Bill, namely, the Ground-Water (Control of Regulation Bill) was formulated by the, Govermnent of India in 1970, and was circulated to all the states for guidance in introducing their respective enactment on the subject. The formulation of such enactments is in an advanced stage in the states of Gujarat, and Rajasthan. With the instance of the Irrigation Commission, a commission of experts recently went into the general enactments on irrigation and examined the Question of unification and simplification of the existing laws in the country. This Commission since prepared a draft lrrigation Bill which would now be circulated to the states for enacting simplified and uniform irrigation Acts. As regards the state tube-wells, it was felt that the present enactments governing their manufacture, development, operation, and maintenance be updated so as to make them more conducive to effective functioning and utilization.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation is considering to undertake a study of all the existing enactments on state tube-well in the various states with uniform model circulating it to the states of entrusting the main- works to the Panchayati Raj has been accepted by the states of Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Jammu and Kashmir, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Orissa, Kerala, Punjab, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, in some states the implementation of this policy is under way.

The ministry of Agriculture and Irrigation has impressed upon the state governments the need for introducing legislation on ground-water and has circulated a draft model Bill for the purpose. The purpose of the Bill is to regulate and control the development of ground-water to Prevent over-exploitation and deterioration in water quality. It has been suggested to the state governments to introduce legislation authorizing them to notify the areas for controlling and regulating ground-water development, granting permits for lifting and using water and for registering the existing users in such areas. Laws for this purpose are under consideration in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Karnataka, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and the Union Territory of Goa.

Crop protection. The Destructive Insects and Pest Act, 1914, passed by the central Government provided for means against the entry of diseases from other countries into India. Suitable provisions also exist in the Act for preventing the spread of plant pests and diseases from one state to another in the country. For implementing the provisions relating to the prevention of the entry of injurious pests and diseases into the country, a chain of plant quarantine and fumigation stations has been established in all important airports and seaports and land frontiers. The state governments have also passed suitable legislative measures for dealing with tile epidemics of plant diseases and pests, empowering them to organize measures for chemical control. The success of plant protection measures largely depends upon the efficacy of the chemicals used for controlling the plant pests and diseases. At the same time, it is important that the chemicals used do not pose any serious risk to human and animal life. It is necessary to ensure the quality of chemicals manufactured in the country or imported and marketed for undertaking plant protection measures.

With the objective of preventing any hazards to human and animal life and to ensure the efficacy of the pesticides, a legislation called the Insecticides Act was passed by the Central Government in 1968. A Central Insecticides Board has been set up to advise the Government on the various aspects of the implementation of the provisions of the Act. A Registration Committee has also been set up. This committee register's the various insecticides and their formulations after scrutinizing and verifying the claims made, by the importer or manufacturer as regards their efficacy in the field and safety to human beings. Any person, desiring to manufacture or sell, stock, exhibit for sale or to distribute, is required to take a licence. Any person manufacturing, stocking or selling misbranded insecticides is liable to bet punished with imprisonment or fine. The Act also provides for the appointment of inspectors to draw samples of insecticides manufactured and get them analysed in the insecticides laboratories established for the purpose and take steps to launch prosecutions for marketing substandard material. These provisions in the Act are intended to ensure quality control on the pesticides.

Improvement of Livestock

Recognizing the importance of livestock in the rural economy, Article 49 of the Constitution prescribes that the State shall endeavour to organize agriculture and animal husbandry on modern and scientific lines and shall, in particular, take steps for preserving and improving breeding, and prohibiting the slaughter of cows, calves and other milch and draught cattle. Upgrading of livestock Legislation for the uprading of livestock through improved breeding has been passed in all the states, except Assam and Tripura. In the state of Uttar Pradesh, the Livestock Improvement Act is in force in Bagpat, Mawana, and Meerut in the Mecrut district and in the Dehra Dun in the Dehra Dun district. The legislative measures provide for the elimination of defective breed in bulls through compulsory castration of scrub animals. Most of the Acts lay down that unless the owner of a breeding bull takes out a licence, the licensing officer cannot order the castration of such a bull. In the states of Assam, Uttar Pradesh and Tripura also, enactments of legislation on these lines are under consideration.

Contagious diseases. Legislative measures have been taken by all states, except Uttar Pradesh, where the Prevention and Control of Animal Contagious Diseases Act is under consideration of the government. The Act provides for the regulation of the entry and movement of infected animals into diffirent states, their registration and treatment, regulation of markets, fairs and exhibitions, cleaning, and disinfection of vehicles used for the transport of diseased animals and reporting the occurrence of scheduled diseases. There is also a Central Act, called the Livestock Importation Act of 1898, under which the Central Government has the authority to regulate, restrict or prohibit the entry by sea, land or air into India of any livestock affected or is liable to be affected by diseases, or the importation of fodder, dung, clothing, harness, etc. pertaining to such livestock. State Governments have been empowered by the Central Government to frame rules under the Act and set up quarantine stations for the purpose. Another Central Act is the Glanders and Farey Act, 1899. The following Acts way be mentioned -

  • The Madhya Pradesh Cattle Diseases Act, 1934.
  • The Madras Rinderpest Act, 1940.
  • The East Punjab Animal Contagious Diseases Act, 1948.
  • The Bengal Diseases of Animals Act, 1944.
  • The Assam Cattle Diseases Act, 1948.
  • The Bombay Diseases of Animals Act, 1948.
  • The Orissa Animal Contagious Diseases Act, 1959.
  • The Diseases of Animals Act Mysore, 1949 repealed by the Mysore Animal Diseases (Control) Act, 1961.
  • The Madhya Bharat Animal Contagious Diseases Act, 1959.
  • The Rajasthan Animal Contagious Diseases Act, 1959.
  • The Madhya Pradesh Sickness Act, 1960.
  • The Gujarat Diseases of Animals (Control) Act, 1963.

The main objectives of these Acts are to control the spread of notifiable infectious diseases and to entail the infliction by vaccination, treatment and destruction of infected livestock. The notifiable diseases are :

  • Rincterpest or cattle plague
  • Foot-and-mouth diseases
  • Haemorrhagic septicaemia
  • Black quarter
  • Anthrax
  • Tuberculosis
  • Johne's diseases
  • Rabies,
  • Glanders and farey
  • Epizootic lymphangitis
  • Donvine and dourine
  • Surna

The notification of diseases outbreak preventive vaccination of the cattle, control of the movement of animals in the diseases-affected area, compulsory quarantining for fresh birds and animals, compulsory segregation and treatment of cattle in the infected area are the steps taken under these Acts. The director of animal husbandry of a state shall appoint a veterinary officer or inspectors who may take the help of police officers to implement the law in the event of outbreaks.

Marketing of livestock and certain livestock products. Regulated markets have been established in the states under the Agricultural Produce Market Act for regulating market practices in respect of agricultural commodities including livestock products.


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