According to the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006, licence and registration renewal should be done one month before the due date. Before the act was implemented, owners of food stalls, hotels and restaurants were allowed to complete the renewal process even on the final due. The messages are proving to be a boon for the owners, as it prompts them to think about saving on the late fee, which is Rs 100 per day.
“As per the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006, licence and registration renewal should have done one month before the due date. Licence holders and person who have registered with FDA have to pay Rs 100 per day as a fine till renewal is done,” said Shivaji Desai, assistant commissioner FDA, Pune division. FDA Pune division is running a special initiative as numerous registrations and licences are pending renewal before December 31, 2012.
“Considering the number of renewals pending and the stipulations as per the new act, we decided to send SMSes to remind owners about renewals, and inform them of the fine for not getting the process done before the due date. We have received calls from many of the owners after the reminders were sent,” said Dilip Sangat, assistant commissioner FDA (Food), Pune.
Vishal Gawade, owner of Maharashtrian Darbar, Vimannagar, who got an SMS, is happy with FDA’s approach. “I had registered my hotel a year ago and was unaware of this new rule as I was quite busy throughout the year. I received message on November 25 and I am happy I paid the renewal fee and only Rs 400 extra, because I was four days late. FDA’s initiative is laudable,” Gawade said.
FDA official Desai added that the rules regarding the renewal details and fine in case of non-payment before due date is mentioned on the license/registration certificate in possession of restaurant and hotel owners, but the FDA’s SMS initiative is an extra service, as it will also create awareness.
Licence/registration renewal pending for around 1,500 establishments with last date being 31 Dec2012 Around 1,000 SMSs sent to owners of hotels, restaurant and food stall so far Licences issued: 23,966 (since August 5, 2011) Registrations done: 44,502 (since August 5, 2011) Total revenue generated in Pune region: Rs 70,63,650 (since August 5, 2011)
(With inputs from Prathmesh Patil)