DR. K. MALAISAMY (CONTD.): Whereas, there is no mention about consultations. What I am trying to say is that there is a total violation, variation, different and deviation from what has been recommended by the Parliamentary Standing Committee on the one side and what is provided here on the other. This is the point I want to make here.
Sir, I am told, through the proposed amendment, the inspection can be done by private agencies and multinational agencies. In the light of this, I am inclined to know from the hon. Minister how is he going to ensure the accountability if private agencies are involved?
Sir, I have reservation regarding the composition also. When the private members and the agencies are more in number, how any decision is going to be taken judiciously? When you have more private members, they will have majority-say in any decision. They may say, 'unanimity is there.' The Bill also says that export of boilers will go up and the waiting time will be reduced. It is not correct. Whoever speaks in favour of the Bill is not well-founded, but is ill-founded. Sir, now, the Inspectorate charges only Rs. 5,000 per MW inspection. But, when you introduce private agencies, I don't know your personal view, but as far as I am concerned, I would say, when the Inspectorate is charging only Rs. 5,000 per MW, now, it is going to be Rs. 1 lakh to Rs. 2 lakhs per MW. With the result, Rs. 20 crores to Rs. 200 crores is going to be jacked up and placed on the head of the manufacturers. What will happen then? Then, the manufacturers will, automatically, raise the price of boiler and the market value of boiler which is sold at a lesser price will go up like anything. This is what is going to happen if this Bill is passed in its present form.
Thirdly, Sir, they say that the export will go up. It is not true. As far as export of boilers is concerned, the sponsor of the Bill says that the exports will go up like anything. According to me, since it does not come within the ambit of the Bill at all, how is export going to be increased? How can they say that export will go up? So, it is ill-founded. What I am trying to say is, as has been rightly pointed out by the previous speaker, this Bill should not be passed in its present form. On the other hand, I demand that it should be referred back to a Committee constituted by the House and the Bill should be scrutinised threadbare. I am told that the proposed amendment is the handiwork of some very high-level multinational agencies and private people. So, the Government should not yield to the pressure and influence. I can quote the people behind this. For example, Lloyd, DUV, etc., are behind this Bill. These are some of the players who are behind this. I would say that any legislation should not be the handiwork of private people. On the other hand, the public interest should be taken care of. So, I demand that the Bill again be referred back to the Committee. If technical developments have taken place, we have to give training to our men and they can do better than the private people. In America and other places, our doctors, engineers, etc., are worshipped like anything. They are treated as God. They are so good in everything. In such a situation, India is not lacking in manpower or skill. India can afford to do anything. So, I request the hon. Minister to keep it at a low price, let us keep it as it is, private agencies and multinational need not be involved in this.
With these few words, I conclude. Thank you.
(FOLLOWED BY USY "3B")
SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA (TAMIL NADU): Sir, with a few suggestions for the Minister to consider, I rise to support this Bill. Before going to the Bill, I would also like to express, through you, that our representation made to the Chairman, long ago, to appoint an Interpreter for Members who want to speak in Tamil, has not been taken into consideration. Recently, some Interpreters have been appointed for some regional languages in the same Secretariat. So, our sentiments should be understood. We hope, this will be taken seriously, which has not been taken so far.
Coming to the Bill, the Indian Boilers Act was enacted in 1923 to provide for the safety of life and property of people from the damage of the explosion of boilers during use. For the past 84 years, this Act has been effectively implemented by the Inspectorate of Boilers. As my colleagues have earlier spoken here, my State, Tamil Nadu, is contributing to nearly 60 per cent of the total industrial boilers that are manufactured and 90 per cent of the total boilers, especially in Trichy, which is having the BHEL, have not reported even one accident all these years. There may be one or two accidents here and there. But it cannot be said that serious incidents have forced to bring forward this amendment Bill. The significant technological developments, has led to the amendments made in this Bill. One or two of the reasons, cited by the Ministry, are not agreeable. For example, in paragraph 2 of the Objects and Reasons, it says, "Since significant technology developments have taken place, world over, in large capacity up to 500 MW, boilers are now manufactured within the country according to latest international standards. Many of the provisions in the present Act have become outdated." The Indian Boilers Act, deals with the administrative part of it, while the Indian Boilers Regulations are concerned with the technical part of it. Under section 28 of the Indian Boilers Act, the Indian Boilers Regulations Act is amended at regular intervals; hence, there is no question of outdating of any provisions of the Act. For example, 500 MW boilers are being manufactured in India for the last 25 years, and under the inspection of the State Inspectorates those boilers are running successful throughout India. Then, in paragraph 3, it says, "The discretionary powers, used by the Inspectorate of Boilers of the State to allow the deviations raise inter-State disputes, and the boilers manufactured in one State are not recognised in user-States due to risks that users suffer." Sir, this cannot be taken into account for there have been no inter-State disputes, as stated in paragraph 3. The relevant provisions of the Indian Boiler Regulations are quite enough for the registration of boilers in any State, which are manufactured in other States. So far, no boiler has been denied registration on the ground of dispute between the States.
Sir, as my colleagues have pointed out, the recommendations of the Standing Committee, which have been meticulously drafted, have not been fully implemented. And, the suggestions of the State Governments, which are going to be the worst sufferers, have also not been taken into consideration. There are some apprehensions, as my colleague, Mr. Sen, pointed out. The coming in of the third party agencies or the alternate agencies or the private parties is not giving full hope to the users of baby boilers. Inspections, during the manufacture of boilers, is currently being carried out by the Inspectorate of Boilers of the States at a nominal fee of Rs. 5000 per megawatt, whereas private inspection agencies charge a heavy fee, which may amount to rupees one lakh.
(Contd. by 3C -- VP)
SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA (CONTD.): This apprehension has to be removed by the Minister. Sir, I would like to put forth certain suggestions one by one for the Minister to take into consideration other than the amendments, which we have given.
Sir, commensurate with the principle of federalism and decentralisation of powers, the State Governments have a fair and legitimate chance in the legislative activities, and this subject of boilers comes under the Concurrent List. The main recommendation which the Standing Committee has given and which the Ministry has not taken into consideration is that the competent persons may be considered or recognised only for power stations more than 50 mega watt capacity for inspection in use for safe operation and efficient maintenance of power stations in order to minimize shut down time. The recognition of competent persons may be given to the State Governments. Sir, inspection of boilers below 50 mega watt could be vested with the present Inspectorate of Boilers. Sir, this would provide them future employment opportunities. So, I would like to suggest that since this inspection involves very, very sensitive part of our life, the private parties which are going to be engaged in this should have very keen and very meticulous approach in the appointment of inspectors. In the present engineering courses, there is no separate course for boilers. So, all those Inspectors, who are going to be appointed by the other parties should have, at least, 5 years experience in boilers because they are going to inspect boilers, which have capacity more than 50 mega watts. So, Boilers Inspectors should be qualified in Mechanical Engineering, Post Graduate Degree and disciplines relevant to boiler technology, and trained in the relevant field of boilers.
Sir, I would like to thank the Minister for having included all the Chief Inspectors of Boilers because that was the amendment given by many of us. When you restricted the participation of the State Governments representatives in the Board, when it was minimised, and the other persons were brought to the equal number of the State representatives, we have ...
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (SHRI SANTOSH BAGRODIA): You have to finish now. You have taken a longer time. You have more time than was allotted to you.
SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA: Sir, I would like to make one or two points which are very essential.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: You finish in one minute.
SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA: The State Governments had the apprehension that one or two State Governments may be denied the opportunity of being a member in the Board. But, now, since the Minister has come forward that all Chief Inspectors will be members. Subsequently, other members in the committee, who are from the experts side, should have an equal responsibility because they are not accountable to any explosion which may occur in future.
So, the views of the State Governments and their suggestions may be obtained before enacting this Boiler Act. These are the suggestions which I would like to make to the Minister, especially, the powers of the State Governments, which have been usurped by these amendments and will be slowly and silently grabbed by the Central Boilers Board. The Central Government usurped certain powers of the State Government to make rules like accident enquiry, more particularly, Appellate Authority, prescribing qualification of Boiler Directorate officials, and the rules of boiler operators and engineers. Sir, I suggest very much that the appellate authority should remain with the State Governments because small users of boilers cannot go to the Central Government for each and every appeal. Thank you, Sir. (Ends)
(Followed by 3d/PK)
SHRI SHANTARAM LAXMAN NAIK (MAHARASHTRA): Mr. Vice-Chairman, Sir, at the outset, I would like to share the sentiments expressed by Dr. Malaisamy and I would also like to say that for Konkani language also, an Interpreter must be appointed. Sir, I would like to refer to your observation when you said that matters of rule can- not be raised in the House. But, Sir, this is not a matter of rule, this is a Constitutional right. The moment a language is included in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution, concerned Members have a right to have an Interpreter here. So it flows down from the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution, not from any rules. Therefore, every Member is entitled to raise the issue of interpretation.
Sir, I stand here to support the Indian Boilers (Amendment) Bill, 1994. If we trace the history, we will find that introduction of famous James Watt's improved steam engine from 1769- 1775 onwards resulted in great improvement in steam plants. This is the history right from 17th Century onwards. Following the Bengal Act of 1864, each of the other provinces framed legislations. In 1920-21, the Boilers Law Committee, was the first to review the Boilers' laws on a national scale, and submitted its Report in March 1921. Thereafter the present legislation was born.
Sir, one general point I would like to submit with respect to this Bill is this. In all the legislations, which were enacted prior to Independence, we still go on making amendments to them. It is not that we have not updated this legislation; many of these legislations have been updated so as to make them new. But people still feel that we are carrying on with the laws framed by the British Government, although we have made amendments, to a great extent, to many of our Bills. Therefore, in principle, I would appeal to the Government of India that in case of all those legislations, which were passed during the British regime, the entire legislation should be replaced, including the Indian Penal Code and no amendment should be carried out. Although we have made amendments to the Indian Penal Code to a large extent suiting to the current situations, this principle should be adopted. Secondly, Sir, while the Government is carrying out so many amendments, I would only express a note of caution that when, ultimately, the Act is printed, I hope all the amendments which are carried will be properly incorporated in the printed version. I am just expressing a note of caution. A Committee has to be constituted to see whether all the amendments carried have been properly incorporated in the printed version.
Then, Sir, as far as the aspect of safety of boilers is concerned, it has to be seen in the larger perspective these days. It is not only a question of safety of the workers who work there, or, their establishment, it is also a question of the safety of the people living in the surrounding areas. Safety of boilers is restricted not only to the factory but also to the locale of place where boilers are situated. So, we have to see this aspect from that angle also. The safety of boilers has to be looked into from the terrorists' angle also. People may join any establishment only for the purpose of exploding a boiler. One cannot rule out that possibility.
Then, Sir, section 5 of the Act is being amended. Sub-Section 4 is being added wherein powers of Inspectors, Deputy Inspectors, etc. etc. are to be prescribed. Similarly, section 4 (a) is sought to be added in which powers of technical people are to be prescribed. Sir, I would like to make a humble submission that if these basic rules are yet to be prescribed, what are we discussing? We are discussing only 30 per cent of the legislation. The powers of Inspectors, Chief Inspectors and technical persons are yet to be prescribed. We don't know what they are, and that is the soul of the legislation! (Contd. by 3E/PB)
SHRI SHANTARAM LAXMAN NAIK (CONTD.): Sir, I am not referring only to your Ministry. This has been the trend in most of the legislations nowadays. You leave almost seventy per cent powers to the rule making authorities, and we only discuss here thirty per cent of the law. Therefore, Sir, I submit that today we are not discussing the real amendment. We are discussing only the limited thing. All the rules will be made thereafter. This aspect, Sir, has to be reviewed not only by his Ministry but by the Government of India as a whole.
Then, you are saying that you have increased the fine from Rs. 100 to Rs. 1000 and from Rs. 1000 to Rs. 1 lakh and so on. Sir, what is this? In the present scenario that is prevalent in factories, etc., and the violations involved, these monetary punishments, according to me, are nothing. These punishments are peanuts. Therefore, you have to look at it from that point of view, the overall monetary transaction involved, the goods involved and so on. In such a case, Sir, those who want to commit mistakes or who want to default will be very glad to see the kind of punishment prescribed here.
Then, Sir, as far as the provision regarding exempting boilers is concerned, where is the guideline? There is a provision. You can give blanket powers to State Government or any authority. If powers are given to exempt, Parliament doesn't know anything about it; Parliament doesn't know in what circumstances, those powers can be exercised. We are totally in the dark. The rule-making authorities will then lay down the guidelines and state under what circumstances, that can be exempted. Again this is not a correct trend as far as legislative drafting is concerned. More and more powers that are to be given have to be specified in the Bill itself.
Then, Sir, I come to the modalities of inspection. Sir, if inspections are to be transparent, then these have to be conducted through the modern electronic mechanism. Everything that is detected there must be recorded on the computer. First, the flaws that the Inspector or any other party sees must be recorded there. Then, his observations, etc., should be recorded. Otherwise, what happens at present is that the Inspectors come and say, 'this is wrong, that is wrong.', and they ultimately do whatever they want to do. That should not be there. Today, it is possible to record everything with the help of the electronic systems which are there. Therefore, every stage of inspection by any authority under the law should be recorded through electronic media so that if any authority transgresses its power as far as inspection is concerned, it will be known.
Then, Sir, the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act must be enforced in such cases. Sir, why I am saying this is because in a majority of the cases, the corruption takes place. Unless you ensure that there is somebody who is keeping a watch on all these things, the acts of the third party who is going to inspect, the acts of Inspectors, Chief Inspectors, will be free as before. Sir, somebody was mentioning about the rehabilitation of these Inspectors, Deputy Inspectors, etc., in case they go out of job. I think, perhaps, they will not mind it. The Inspectors and Deputy Inspectors in the present scenario will not mind even being kicked out of the job. I hope I am making myself clear on this point. Therefore, Sir, the provisions of this Act have to be applied here.
Then, Sir, the issue is whether these third parties, whether they are multi-nationals or others, are covered under the Prevention of Corruption Act. What action can you take against these people in case they connive with the owners of these factories? As far as Inspectors are concerned, of course, they are public servants, so, they are covered under the Prevention of Corruption Act. It is clear. But, frankly speaking, I am not aware whether the law of the land, namely, the Prevention of Corruption Act, will apply to this authority. If it is not applicable, Sir, something should be done to cover these authorities. With these submissions, Sir, I support the Amendment Bill. Thank you.
(Followed by 3f/SKC)
SHRI SANJAY RAUT (MAHARASHTRA): Sir, this is a very important Bill. It is not a political issue, as our colleague has also mentioned, but a technical issue. Some hon. Members have said that it is an outdated Bill. It may be an outdated Bill but the boiler industry is not outdated. This industry gives bread and butter and employment to many people in Maharashtra and other States. So, we have to take care of this industry.
Sir, the first Indian Boilers Act was introduced eight-four years back, in the year 1923. The aim of the Act during the British Raj was only safety of operations of boilers and protection of lives of workers employed in these units. In the last eight-four years, there has been tremendous progress and change in technology and industrial development. At present, the turnover of boiler manufacturing industry is between fifteen and twenty thousand crores of rupees. India is also exporting boilers and earning precious foreign exchange to the tune of about Rs. 2000 crores. This shows that our engineers and entrepreneurs have achieved skills and capacity in manufacturing boilers and its ancillaries.
Sir, the new era of globalisation emerged and the policy of liberalisation was introduced in 1991. The aim of liberalisation was to end the Inspector Raj so as to achieve faster industrial growth. Though that was achieved in the other sectors of industry, unfortunately, it was not the case with the boiler industry even after 16 years of the new policies since 1991.
Sir, who are the string-pullers who opposed amendments to the Indian Boilers Bill, 2007? The main opposition comes from bureaucrats because of their monopoly in the inspection of boilers at various stages of manufacture. In the absence of a single appellate authority provided by the Indian Boilers Act, the attitude of bureaucracy has aided corruption in this sector. Sir, I will cite only one example to emphasize my point. A meeting of all the members of the Central Boilers Board was held on 18th April 2007 in New Delhi. If you look at the participants, out of the 25 members who attended the meeting, a large number comprised of Directors of Boilers of different States. In fact, this board is a totally unbalanced set-up where the Directors of Boilers are 23, while representatives of manufacturers of boilers have an insignificant representation on this Board. There is also an interesting point with regard to the set-up of the committee. Many a time, the members from manufacturers of boilers come from some major manufacturing industry; I will call them the big fish of the industry. Sir, these representatives protect the interests of only the bigger industries and totally neglect the interest of upcoming and talented entrepreneurs of the country. In fact, I suspect that these old-fashioned manufacturers join hands with bureaucrats and hamper the progress of small and young entrepreneurs.
The main demand of the Indian boiler manufacturers is the privatisation of the inspection process and bringing it at par with international standards of boiler inspection. This will certainly boost export of boilers. In international practice, private inspection agencies are trusted and accepted for boiler manufacturing and design of boilers, inspection at manufacturing stage and conducting of steam-state inspections before issuing final approval. At present, these works are carried out by Government agencies of different States under Directors of Boilers of different States. Sir, this has led to corruption in boiler manufacturing industries. Interestingly, one member of the Central Boiler Board, and also the Director of Boilers of one State, who eventually attended meeting on 18th April was caught under charges of corruption and is now under suspension. (Contd. by 3g/hk)
SHRI SANJAY RAUT (CONTD.): It is also interesting to note that the same gentleman is the important office bearer of their association. Lastly, Sir, I would like to draw the attention of the House to the fact that the countries importing boilers from India do not accept certificates given by the present Government authority and insist upon an internationally accepted private agency's certificates. Hence, the Indian boiler manufacturers are bound by State Governments inspection agencies for Indian market and international inspection agencies for export market. This is a clear case of discrimination. I, therefore, appeal to this august House to give serious thoughts to the present Bill which will fulfil the aspirations of the younger generations who wish to compete in the world market of boiler manufacturing. Thank you.
SHRI PYARIMOHAN MOHAPATRA (ORISSA): Sir, I rise to oppose the Bill as the Bill seeks to erode the powers of the State Governments and also is aimed at privatisation of a function which can easily be done by the State Governments. The hon. Minister while moving the Bill talked of corruption among the inspectors of the State Governments and States having inadequate number of inspectors. These are the reasons. But corruption is something which is prevalent all over, both in Delhi and the State capitals right down to the village functionaries. You cannot take away corruption by bringing it to Delhi. You are only centralising corruption. As regards the deficiency in the staff, the Centre can do two things by amending the Bill: first, provide adequate training to inspectors; and then the Centre can give adequate funds to the State Governments for the purpose of increasing the number of inspectors. I am in agreement with most of my colleagues who have spoken earlier. They have mainly talked of the Central Government taking away the powers of the State Governments. There are plenty of clauses which have been introduced and which talk vastly of Centre acquiring these powers and it was mentioned there was hardly any consultation between the Centre and the States. Hon. Minister himself mentioned that most States have not agreed to these amendments. The hon. Minister talked of representation to each State in the Board. I find from the Bill that only 15 members from the State Governments will be chosen and they will be chosen by the Central Government. Even representation has not been mentioned. So, the Central Government clearly ignored the States which are not friendly towards it. Then, these technical advisors which have been mentioned by most of my preceding speakers. Through the system of delegation from the Central Government and from the Board, unlimited powers could be given to the technical advisors and this gentleman, if somebody is a Minister, could operate straight through the Chairman of the Board with the Secretary of the Government to centralise corruption and dish out favours. The appellate authority under the original law was appointed by the State Governments. Now, you want to appoint them from here. (Contd. By 3h/GSP)
SHRI PYARIMOHAN MOHAPATRA (CONTD.): What is the big deal in it? Why don't you want to appoint Appellate Authority from here? Just because you can keep this system under your control and exploit it!
Somebody mentioned about the exclusion. The power to exclude certain boilers from the scope of the Act is there under Section 34. At present, this power is with the State Governments. If you are shifting because of corruption, how will it improve matters? Do you think your officers coming from some foreign country? They belong to this society, and, Sir, corruption is a disease, which has spread throughout the society. Sir, why should there be exclusion at all? This is another question. In the name of industrialisation, exclusion has been put in the Bill in the year 1923. Do you feel that because of industrialisation, exclusion ought to be done?
I support you when you speak of raising the fine to rupees one lakh under section 25. But as far as section 24 is concerned, please reconsider it; two years' imprisonment and a fine of rupees one lakh seems to be very harsh.
In the end, once again, I appeal that this tendency -- which has been going on for the last fifty years, that is, after the first decade since Independence -- of arrogating powers of the States, and, ringing the death knell of federalism. Will you please stop it? You had, at one time, same party at the Centre and in lot of States. So, you could amend and take away items from the State List to the Concurrent List.
Go on doing as you please, but please stop it for heaven's sake. In many other matters, which will come up, we will bring up the same subject. Yesterday, you were not here, that is, not in power at the Centre. Tomorrow, you may not be in power. What will happen then? When you will be in power in a number of States and not at the Centre, what will happen? Please think of that and do something with caution. Thank you.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (SHRI SANTOSH BAGRODIA): Hon. Minister to reply to the debate.
THE MINISTER OF STATE IN THE DEPARTMENT OF INDUSTRIAL POLICY & PROMOTION, MINISTRY OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY (SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR): Thank you, Mr. Vice-Chairman, Sir. May I, at the threshold, thank each and every hon. Member for having participated vigorously in the debate on this very important piece of legislation? I have heard each of my colleagues loud and clear and with all the attention that the serious interventions deserve. Sir, I would like to seek your permission to reply to some of the important points that have been raised in the hope that at the end of my reply, I would be able to commend the Bill for consideration of the House.
Sir, three or four substantive and very important points have been raised and the other points have been raised around those points. But the most important point seems to be premised on an apprehension that the role of the State Governments would be diluted by certain amending provisions of the Bill. I hasten to dispel, with all the force at my command, this apprehension. Sir, in response to the recommendations of the Standing Committee, we have consciously decided -- and, that is now included in the Bill -- that each and every State Government will be represented in the constitution of the Central Boilers Board, which would be the apex body to formulate the rules and regulations and which would implement the substantive provisions of the Bill. (Contd. by sk-3j)
SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR (CONTD.): All powers will follow from the deliberations of this very extensively constituted body, which will have nominees of the Central Government, professionals as well as technical, or any other nominee of the State Government. So, Sir, the first and the basic premise that the Bill is by way of dilution of the authority of the State inspectorates, in my respectful submission, is not well founded.
Sir, the second point which is about who will be competent to carry out inspections, whether third party inspections were at all necessary, with respect to that, Sir, I can only repeat what I said in the opening, namely, that with the advance of technology, with the increased demand for boilers, with the increased necessity of bringing larger number of boilers within the net of inspections, we have considered in a very comprehensive way, and for good reasons, that it is necessary to entrust, in addition to the State inspectorates, the task of inspections to third party private agencies. Now, who would these agencies be? These agencies will be anyone who has shown the requisite competence to be able to certify as to the technical superiority or technical requirements of a boiler. And, Sir, these need not be the multinational corporations. In fact, most of these third party inspection agencies were comprised of our own people. In fact, even if they were to be a multinational company, it is not going to have an expatriate company to do the inspection here; it will only employer owned people. And, who can be the qualified inspectors will, in turn, be determined by the rules and the regulations to be framed by the Central Boilers Board which, in turn, will have representation on it from the State Governments or the State Governments and also the Central Government nominees. So, on this score alone, I would hasten to dispel any misgivings that the hon. Members might entertain.
Sir, then, a question was raised about the lack of efficacy of the penal provisions. Now, Sir, one can have a different perspective on it. One can say that two years is not punitive enough or rigorous enough; one can say that one lakh rupees is not rigorous enough. But, Sir, on a totality of consideration of all the circumstances, we considered that it would suffice the cause of a purposive legislation to enhance the penal provisions in the manner that we have, and to enhance penalties from a thousand rupees to one hundred thousand rupees, I think, Sir, considering the overall circumstances of the industry, considering the demands for a benign legislation as well as an effective legislation, the penalties proposed would be adequate. And, in any case, Sir, since most of these are to be dealt with by the regulations, we believe that if experience were to tell us that we have been less than forthcoming on certain accounts, we always have the right to amend the regulations.
One of the points that was raised by my colleague, Mr. Naik, and, I think, it is a point well taken, was that a very large part of what is going to make effective this legislation has been left to be incorporated in the regulations. The point was well-taken. But, there is a reason for it. We know it, Sir, now for many years that the statute really provides only the skeleton of the law. The law is clothed by the regulations, in order that regulations are much easier to be amended, in order to meet the exigencies of the situation and in order to respond to the experiences in the working of a legislation. Therefore, Sir, the fact that some of the important measures which this legislation will bring in by regulations is not interrogation of our commitment to statutes or to substantive legislation but only to make more effective the skeleton of the law which, in the fitness of things, is what statutory legislation is all about.
Sir, a point was made that some of the provisions are more punitive and less preventive. I think, Sir, this is a distinction without a difference. You have to have a punitive measure so as to enable certain mischief to be remedied and to be prevented. (Contd. by ysr-3k)
SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR (CONTD.): One can have different viewpoints about what is effective or what is not effective. But, I think, Sir, 32 years, from 1974 when the first Technical Committee was appointed and 13 years from 1994 when the Bill was first introduced, have not been spent in vain. We have considered the matter as minutely, as closely, as has been possible in consultation with all stakeholders. The Labour Ministry, the Power Boards of the State Governments, Members of the Central Board, and my own Ministry have taken a considered and conscious view in proposing the amendments that we have.
On the whole, I do believe that this legislation, with the amendments, does satisfy the prime needs of our times. We have also ensured, Sir, that whatever more remains to be included, in the light of the experience, will be included through the regulations.
Lastly, I would like to touch upon one point which was about the powers of the Technical Adviser. It was considered that the Technical Adviser would become too powerful. I may hasten to dispel that misconception also. All the powers which were at one time proposed to be with the Technical Adviser, who incidentally is Secretary of the Central Boilers Board, will now be vested in the Board as a whole. So, Sir, there is enough room for discussion and debate which I have just pointed out is a widely representative body.
Sir, with these words, I think I have been able to respond to the substantive points made here. I believe that this legislation would receive acceptance and approval.
SHRI V. NARAYANASAMY: What about the existing boilers' inspectors? What are you going to do for them?
SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR: As far as existing boilers' inspectors are concerned, I may inform my colleague Mr. Narayanasamy, this third party inspection is not to their exclusion. My friend's apprehensions have been taken care of. The role of the inspectors remain; this is in addition to their role only to meet the growing demands of inspection.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (SHRI SANTOSH BAGRODIA): The question is ..(Interruptions)
SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA: Why don't you restrict a competent person's inspecting capacity to more than 50 MW?
SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR: This was considered in-depth in the Cabinet and the Government took the view that since we are now introducing third party inspection, it is only in the fitness of things to have all the boilers under the regime of inspection. Because experience told us that baby boilers, the smaller boilers, caused lot more accidents in the past than the big boilers.
SHRI TAPAN KUMAR SEN: What about Technical Adviser? Can you clarify it? You are giving a lot of power to an individual, Technical Adviser.
SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR: I think it is going to be vested in the Central Boilers Board and not with the Technical Board.
SHRI TAPAN KUMAR SEN: But your law says that it would be the Technical Adviser. Even your amendment does not take care of the assignment of the huge power to the Technical Adviser, to an individual.
DR. K. MALAISAMY: Sir, the modern concept is decentralisation of power and delegation of powers. In the proposed amendment, they are trying to concentrate power on a single authority, namely, on the Board, particularly with reference to the Technical Adviser. Will there be a relook on that, and will you see that the power of delegation already given to the States and other people will be sustained?
SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR: Sections 4 A B & C are quite explicit. Since the Board itself is a widely representative body with each and every State Government on it, nothing can be decided by the Board except with the active concurrence of all the State Governments. The question of centralisation does not arise. (Interruptions)
DR. K. MALAISAMY: The Board is consisting of whom? (Interruptions)
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (SHRI SANTOSH BAGRODIA): No more questions. (Interruptions) I think everybody has spoken in detail. (Interruptions)
The Minister has replied. (Interruptions) No more questions. (Interruptions)
SHRI M.V. MYSURA REDDY: Sir, my amendment is there. (Interruptions)
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: You have already spoken. (Interruptions) Everybody cannot speak second time. (Interruptions) His turn will come while the Bill is being passed. (Interruptions) It is not being passed just like that. Please sit down. Your turn will come. (Interruptions)
(Contd. by VKK/3L)
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Your chance will come. (Interruptions) Please, have patience. The rule is that you will get a chance.
SHRI M.V. MYSURA REDDY: Sir, I know the rule.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Now, the question is:
That the Bill further to amend the Indian Boilers Act, 1923 be
taken into consideration.
The motion was adopted.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Now, we shall take up clause-by-clause consideration of the Bill.
Clause 2 was added to the Bill.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Now, Amendments (Nos.15 to 17) by Shri Tapan Kumar Sen, Amendment (No.23) by Shri Siva and Amendments (Nos.24 to 26) by Shri M.V. Mysura Reddy.
SHRI TAPAN KUMAR SEN (WEST BENGAL): Sir, I beg to move Amendments (Nos. 15 to 17).
15 That at page 2, for lines 12 and 13, the following be substituted, namely:
'(cb) "Competent Person" means a person recognised as per regulations for inspection and certification of boilers having capacity more than 100 MW during use;'
16 That at page 2, lines 15 and 16 be deleted.
17 That at page 2, lines 40 and 41 be deleted.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (SHRI SANTOSH BAGRODIA): I shall now put the Amendments (Nos. 15 to 17) moved by Shri Tapan Kumar Sen to vote.
Amendments (Nos.15 to 17) were negatived.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Amendment (No.23) by Shri Tiruchi Siva.
SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA (TAMIL NADU): No, Sir. I am not moving my amendment.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: So many people are speaking. (Interruptions) Let him speak. Not moving. Okay. Shri Mysura Reddy. Now, your time has come.
SHRI M.V. MYSURA REDDY (ANDHRA PRADESH): Sir, I wanted to have a clarification.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Now, you can ask, if you want to.
SHRI M.V. MYSURA REDDY: Sir, there is a Board, as the Minister has told us.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: First, move Amendments and then seek clarifications.
SHRI M.V. MYSURA REDDY (ANDHRA PRADESH): Sir, I beg to move Amendments (Nos.24 to 26).
24 That at page 2, for lines 12 to 13, the following be substituted, namely:
'(cb) "Competent Person" means a person recognized as per regulations for inspection and certification of boilers having capacity more than 50 MW during use. All inspectors shall be ipso facto competent persons for all capacities.'
25 That at page 2, for lines 15 and 16 the following be substituted, namely:
'(ccd) "Inspecting authority" means an institution recognized in such manner as may be prescribed by regulations for the inspection and certification of boilers and boiler components during manufacture having capacity more than 50 MW. All Chief Inspectors of Boilers shall be ipso facto Inspecting Authorities for all capacities.'
26 That at page 2, for lines 34 to 35, the following be substituted, namely:
"(ii) replacement of any part of boiler or boiler component by a part which conform to any specification in the regulations."
Sir, regarding the 'competent person', I move that all inspectors shall be ipso-facto competent persons for all capacities. But, for private person, I move for 50 megawatts because our people will be suffering, our Government-agent people will be suffering. Regarding 'Inspecting Authority' also, I suggested for 50 megawatts. Then, regarding the 'Technical Adviser'. When there is a Board and the Board is looking after, there is no need for taking a Technical Adviser because it is a State subject. When you are taking up a State subject and making a legislation, there is no need for this 'Technical Adviser'. And, Sir, I am moving these Amendments (Nos.24 to 26).
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: I shall now put the Amendments (Nos. 24 to 26) moved by Shri Mysura Reddy to vote.
Amendments (Nos.24 to 26) were negatived.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Now, Amendment No.27 by Shri M.V. Mysura Reddy.
SHRI M.V. MYSURA REDDY (ANDHRA PRADESH): Sir, I beg to move Amendment (No.27).
27 That at page 2, lines 40 and 41 be deleted.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: I shall now put the Amendment (No.27) moved by Shri Mysura Reddy to vote.
Amendment (No.27) was negatived.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Now, Amendments (Nos.3 to 6) by the hon. Minister.
SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR: Sir, I beg to move the Amendments (Nos.3 to 6).
3 That at page 1, for lines 11 to 13, the following be substituted, namely: -
'(a) "accident" means an explosion of boiler, or boiler component, which is calculated to weaken the strength or an uncontrolled release of water or steam therefrom, liable to cause death or injury to any person or damage to any property;'
4 That at page 2, lines 1 and 2, for the words "design gauge pressure" the words "design gauge pressure and working gauge pressure" be substituted.
5 That at page 2, for lines 10 to 16, the following be substituted, namely:
'(ca) "Competent Authority" means an institution recognised in such manner as may be prescribed by regulations for issue of certificate to the welders for welding of boiler and boiler components;
(cb) "Competent Person" means a person recognized in such manner as may be prescribed by regulations for inspection and certification of boilers and boiler components during manufacture, erection and use. All Inspectors shall be ipso facto Competent Persons;
(4) after clause (ccc), the following clauses shall be inserted, namely:
(ccd) "Inspecting Authority" means an institution recognised in such manner as may be prescribed by regulations for the inspection and certification of boilers and boiler components during manufacture. All Chief Inspectors of Boilers shall be ipso facto Inspecting Authorities;'
6 That at page 2, lines 23 and 24, the words "from a boiler" be deleted.
The questions were put and the motions were adopted.
Clause 3, as amended, was added to the Bill.
(Followed by RSS/3m)
Clauses 4 and 5 were added to the Bill.
Clause 6: Insertion of new sections 4A to 4H
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (SHRI SANTOSH BAGRODIA): In clause 6, there are 9 amendments.
Amendments (No. 7 to 9) by the hon. Minister.
Amendments (No. 18 to 21) by Shri Tapan Kumar Sen.
Amendment (No.28) by Shri Tiruchi Siva and Shri M.V. Mysura Reddy.
Amendment (No.29) by Shri M.V. Mysura Reddy.
SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR: Sir, I beg to move:
(7) That at page 3, lines 14 and 15 be deleted.
(8) That at page 3, lines 27 to 41 be deleted.
(9) That at page 4, lines 1 to 30 be deleted.
SHRI TAPAN KUMAR SEN: Sir, I move only Amendment No. 18.
(18) That at page 3 lines 18 to 26 be deleted.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Shri Tiruchi Siva, are you moving your Amendment?
SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA: No, Sir. I am not moving.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Amendment (No. 28) by Shri M.V. Mysura Reddy. Are you moving it?
SHRI M.V. MYSURA REDDY: Yes Sir.
(28) That at page 3, lines 18 to 26 be deleted.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: Now, Amendment (No. 29) by Shri M.V. Mysura Reddy. Are you moving?
SHRI M.V. MYSURA REDDY: I am moving, Sir.
(29) That at page 4, lines 18-30, for the words "Technical Advisor" wherever they occur the word "Board" be substituted.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (SHRI SANTOSH BAGRODIA): Now, I shall first put the Amendment (No. 7 to
9) by the hon. Minister to vote.
The questions were put and the motions were adopted.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: I shall now put the Amendment (No.18) moved
by Shri Tapan Kumar Sen to vote.
The Amendment( No. 18) was negatived.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: I shall now put the Amendment (No. 28)
by Shri M.V.Mysura Reddy to vote.
The Amendment( No. 28) was negatived
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: I shall now put the Amendment (No. 29)
by Shri M.V.Mysura Reddy to vote.
The Amendment (No.29) was negatived.
Clause 6, as amended, was added to the Bill.
Clauses 7 to 9 were added to the Bill.
Clause-10 Amendment of Section 8
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: In clause 10, there are 2 Amendments.
Amendment (No. 10) by the Minister.
Amendment (No. 33) by Shri M.V. Mysura Reddy.
SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR: Sir, I beg to move:
(10) That at page 7, for lines 1 and 2, the following be substituted,
(b) for sub-section (3), the following sub-section shall be substituted, namely:-
(3) When a certificate ceases to be in force, the owner of the boiler may apply to the Competent Person for renewal thereof for such period as may be prescribed by regulations."
SHRI M.V. MYSURA REDDY: Sir, I move:
(33) That in the list of amendments dated the 14th November, 2007, amendment number 10 be deleted.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN (SHRI SANTOSH BAGRODIA): Now, I shall first put the Amendment (No. 10)
by the hon. Minister to vote.
The question was put and the motion was adopted.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: I shall now put the Amendment (No.33) moved
by Shri M.V. Mysura Reddy to vote.
The Amendment (No.33) was negatived.
Clause 10, as amended, was added to the Bill.
Clauses 11 to 16 were added to the Bill.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: In clause 17, there is one Amendment (No.30)
by Shri Tiruchi Siva. Are you moving it?
SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA: No, Sir.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: I shall now put clause 17 to vote.
Clause 17 was added to the Bill.
CLAUSE 18: Insertion of new section 18A.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: There is one Amendment (No. 18) by the
SHRI ASHWANI KUMAR: Sir, I beg to move:
(11) That at page 8, lines 25 to 33 be deleted.
The question was put and the motion was adopted..
Clause 18, as amended, was added to the Bill
Clause 19 was added to the Bill..
CLAUSE 20: Amendment of section 20.
THE VICE-CHAIRMAN: There is one Amendment (No. 31)) by Shri
Tiruchi Siva. Are you moving?
SHRI TIRUCHI SIVA: No, Sir.
Clause 20 was added to the Bill.
(contd. by 3n)