GOVERNMENT OF WEST BENGAL
Department of Agriculture
(M W & C – Branch)
Dated, Calcutta the 8 November 1982
In exercise of the power conferred by section 38 of West Bengal Agricultural Produce Marketing (Regulation) Act, 1972 (West Ben. Act XXXV of 1972), the Governor is pleased hereby to make the following rules, namely:
REGULATION OF AGRICULTURAL MARKETING
Retail sale shall be deemed to have taken place if the quantity of agricultural produce involved in the sale dose not exceed the limit specified in column (2) of schedule B in respect of the item of agricultural produce described in column (1) of the said Schedule.
13. Marketing of Agricultural produce in a market area
(1) All kinds of agricultural produce or processed in the market area except such quantity for retail sale shall be sold on the principal market yard or sub market yard or yards, as the case may be, and not yet any other place within the market area and the sale and purchase of such agricultural produce in such yards shall be made by open auction or by tender system or by sample or by open agreement as may be permitted by the market committee. The seller shall have the potion to accept or reject any did offered at the auction or, as the case may be, any price offered at the negotiation of sale made in any other way permitted by the market committee:
Provided that the market committee may, for special reasons, allow purchase and sale of agricultural produce referred to in this sub-rule at any premises or place out side the principal market yard or sub market yard or yards but within the market area, such premises or place being mentioned by the market committee in the licence granted to the market functionary.
(2) Details of agricultural produce to be sold or resold in the market area shall be reported by the sellers or the buyers, as the case may be, before sale or resale, to the market committee in such manner as the market committee may require.
(3) The price of agricultural produce shall not be settled in the market area by secret signs or secret bid and, subject to the provisions of section 33, no deductions shall be made from the agreed price of the agricultural produce concerned in any account either in by adjusting the price or weight or measure or otherwise.
(4) All price quotations given or offered in the market area by a tender, commission agent or broker shall be deemed to be for the agricultural produce only and shall not be deemed to include price for the articles used as containers thereof or other charges, unless the contrary is specifically stated in the quotation.
(5) The units of price quotation in every market area shall be in standard weight and standard measure.
(6) In the market area the same person shall not act as a broker both for the buyer and the seller of an agricultural produce in the same transaction.
(7) No weights, measures and weighing instruments or measuring instruments other than the standard ones shall be used in any transaction in the market area.
(8) The tender and commission agent and if a commission agent is not employed, the purchaser shall make arrangements for immediate weighment or measurement of the agricultural produce brought into the market area for marketing or storing therein.
(9) Immediately after any agricultural produce is weighed or measured the purchased shall settle the account and pay the seller or his commission agent, as the case may be, for the sale of the produce so weighted or measured, on the same day, and the commission agent shall pay the seller, for the produce sold, on the same day.
(10) In a market area, no person shall, in the absence of an express agreement, be compelled to employ a broker or a commission agent when none is so employed.
(11) Hours of business in the market area shall be such as may be determined by the market committee.
(12) The changes payable to commission agents, broker, weighmen, measurers, warehousemen or surveyors for their service to the sellers or buyers may from time to time be fixed by the market committee with prior approval of the Board.
14. Inspection and verification
(1) The Secretary or any other person authorised by the market committee or Board in this behalf shall be entitled to examine, without notice and at all responsible hours, books of accounts of the licensed traders, brokers, commission agents, weighmen, warehousemen, surveyors etc. for carrying out the purpose of the Act.
(2) Every market functionary shall, on requisition in writing being made to him by the market committee or its Secretary, immediately produce for examination such books of accounts or other documents as may be specified in such requisition.
(3) The Secretary, every member of the market committee and any other person authorised by market committee or by the Board in this behalf shall be entitled to inspect, examine any compare, without notice and at all reasonable hours, any weight, measure or weighing instruments and measuring instruments used, kept or possessed by any market functionary or any person or persons under this authority or control in the market area.
(4) Every market functionary shall, on requisition in writing made to him by the Secretary, immediately produce for examination every scale, weight or measure used, kept or possessed by him or any other person or persons under this authority or control and shall allow the person authorised by the Secretary in this behalf to inspect, examine and compare the same.
15. Confiscation of non-standard scale, weight and measures
(1) If any of the weights, measures or weighing instruments or measuring instruments is, on examination, found or suspected to be not conforming to a standard scale, weight or measure as the case may be, the Secretary or a member of the market committee or any other person authorised by the market committee or by the Board in this behalf and holding the inspection and verification, may at once seize such scale, weight or measure in presence of two or more witness and submit a report forthwith to the market committee.
(2) On examination of the report and further verification, if deemed necessary, to the scale, weight or measure in presence of the persons affected, the market committee may, in addition to any other action that it may decide to take against the market functionary concerned under the provisions of the act, confiscate and destroy such non-standard scale, weight or measure, as the case may be.
16. Prohibition of adulteration of agricultural produce
No market functionary or any other person operating in any market area shall adulterate any agricultural produce or shall cause such produce should be adulterated.
17. Payment of fees to the market committee
(1) When a licensed trader is the buyer of an agricultural produce, he shall within a week from the date of the instruction, pay the fees prescribed under subsection (1) of section 17, to the market committee or any office or employee or any other person authorised by the market committee in this behalf, either in cash or by bank draft along with a statement showing the date of transaction, the agricultural produce bought together with quantities and money value thereof and the amount of fees payable therefore.
(2) When a licensed trader is the seller of an agricultural produce, he shall recover the fees from the buyer and pay the amount so recovered, within a week from the date of the transaction, to the market committee or any of its officers or employees authorised by the market committee in this behalf, in cash or by Bank draft along with a statement showing the date of transaction, in the name of the buyer, the quantity of agricultural produce purchased with money value thereof and the amount recovered from the buyer.
18. Submission of returns and assessment of fees
(1) Every licensed trader shall submit to the Secretary returns of turn over in form 7 for every forth night by the third working day of the following fortnight.
(2) Every such return shall be accompanied by the duplicate receipt issued by the market committee for payment of fees under Act in terms of the fortnightly return.
(3) The notice to be issued under sub-section (4) of section 17A shall be in form 8.
(4) If a trader fails to submit any return of turnover as required under subsection 1 of section 17A or fails to comply the terms of a notice under subsection (4) of section 17A, the Secretary shall, after giving the trader an opportunity of being heard, make the assessment of fees on the basis of past records of turn over of the licensee available with the market committee or on the basis reasonable estimates to be recorded in writing.
19. Settlement of disputes between buyers and sellers
If any market area any dispute arises between and sellers of agricultural produce or their agents the market committee shall arrange for the settlement thereof in the following manner, namely:
(a) the dispute shall immediately by reported to the Secretary who himself or any person authorised by him in this behalf shall settle the same amicably. The dispute shall, as far as possible, decided on the spot on the same day,
(b) If the Secretary or the authorised person fails to settle the dispute, each of the two parties to the dispute shall, as soon as may be, select one arbitrator other than the two selected by the parties, from the panel of arbitrators prepared for the purpose by the market committee under clause (e):
Provided that if both the parties to the dispute select the same arbitrator, the market committee shall not select any other arbitrator,
(c) Where three arbitrators have been selected, the market committee shall, immediately after such selection, refer the dispute to them and the three arbitrators shall expeditiously decide the dispute by majority of votes and make an award accordingly, and where only one arbitrator has been selected, the market committee shall immediately refer the dispute to him and he shall expeditiously decide the dispute and make an award,
(d) the decision on the dispute given and award made by the arbitrator or arbitrators shall be final,
(e) a market committee shall prepare in April every year a panel of twelve arbitrators from agriculturists or traders living the market area:
Provided that no member of the market committee or any professional lawyer shall be included in the panel of arbitrators,
(f) no fee shall be payable to the arbitrator or arbitrators by the parties to the dispute.
20. Promotion of grading and stamdardisaton of agricultural produce
(1) The market committee shall preserve, for the guidance and inspection of the sellers and buyers, samples of standard grades of non-perishable agricultural produce sold in the market area.
(2) The market committee shall take all necessary steps for grading and standardisation of such agricultural produce as may be specified by the Director from time to time and for prevention of agricultural produce in the market area.
Explanation – For the purpose of this rule, as also of rule 7 and rule 16 adulteration of agricultural produce shall include mixing of inferior stuff with superior produce mixing of different varieties of different qualities, mixing of sieved remains of the agricultural produce with the agricultural produce and mixing of earth, dirt and stones or any other extraneous matter with any agricultural produce, affecting the quality, colour, composition or standard of the agricultural produce.
21. Dissemination of information etc.
(1) The market committee shall preserve in its office a copy of the Act and the rules and notifications issued thereunder and the buy-laws made by it for inspection of the public, free of charge, at all responsible hours.
(2) All directions issued by a market committee for the guidance of persons using market shall be displayed on the notice board and such display shall be deemed to be sufficient notice of its contents to all such persons:
Provided that the market committee may, if it thinks necessary, cause such notice to be served on persons concerned or to be published in the local news papers.
(3) All papers relating to general market information and instructions as may be issued by the Director of the Board from time to time under the provisions of the Act and the rules made thereunder shall be displayed on the notice board.