The Cabinet on Monday gave the final approval to the draft of the Jute Bill, 2016 with a provision of maximum three years’ imprisonment or maximum Tk one lakh fine or both for the violation of the law.The approval was given at the regular weekly meeting of the Cabinet held at Bangladesh Secretariat with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in the chair.
Briefing reporters after the meeting, Cabinet Secretary Mohammad Shafiul Alam said the proposed draft law is a modification of the Jute Ordinance 1962.
He said a specific amount of maximum financial punishment has been incorporated in the draft law that was not specified in the original ordinance.
The Cabinet Secretary said the draft law was placed before the Cabinet in Bangla as per the earlier directive of the Supreme Court for translating all ordinances into Bangla promulgated by martial law regimes.
About the salient features of the draft law, Shafiul Alam said it has 32 sections empowering the government on various issues like producing jute and jute made goods, encouraging and motivating farmers to produce jute, carrying out research and issue licenses for such purposes.
Besides, provisions are also there for empowering the government on the draft of the proposed law to appoint agents and brokers, fix prices, impose development fee and registration of contracts.
According to the section 21 of the draft law, Alam said, the government could punish anyone or organisation for giving false statement or for violation of the law.
The Cabinet also approved the proposal of the Ministry of Civil Aviation and Tourism for signing the Air Transport Agreement between the government of the United States of America and the government of Bangladesh.
The Cabinet Secretary said the draft agreement has been formulated to fulfill the required aspects of both the countries to conduct flight operations between Bangladesh and the USA.
He said on August 15, 2013, a Memorandum of Consultation was signed between the two countries and the proposed agreement has been framed in light of that Memorandum of Consultation.
For flight operations in the USA, Alam said, such bilateral agreement is needed and it has been prepared in line with the rules and regulations of air traffic in America.
Under the agreement, the Cabinet secretary said, both the countries would be able to nominate as much as airline operators to operate flights between the two countries as their designated airlines.
He said that the flight operations between the airlines operators of Bangladesh and the USA remained stopped for long and the initiative for resuming that began in 2013 through the signing of a memorandum of consultation.
Ministers and state ministers and secretaries concerned were present.