Haryana passes bill aimed to curb illegal immigration

PTI | Chandigarh | Updated: 28-02-2024 22:59 IST | Created: 28-02-2024 22:59 IST
Haryana passes bill aimed to curb illegal immigration
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The Haryana Assembly Wednesday passed a bill aimed to curb illegal immigration, with Home Minister Anil Vij saying that activities of unregistered travel agents who cheat gullible youth have emerged as a ''serious disease''. The assembly also passed a bill to regulate private coaching institutions in the state so as to safeguard the interests of students and their guardians.

A total of nine bills, including the Haryana Registration and Regulation of Travel Agents Bill, 2024, were passed on the concluding day of over the week-long Budget session. Some of the bills passed were introduced during previous days.

The nine bills were passed in the absence of the opposition Congress members who had staged a walkout from the House on another matter.

Moving the travel agents bill, Vij said that activities of unscrupulous travel agents who cheat gullible youth have emerged as a ''serious disease'' which needs to be tackled.

The bill provides for measures to check and monitor the unlawful and fraudulent activities of the travel agents, he said.

According to the provisions of the bill, whoever attempts or is found involved in human smuggling or found involved in the preparation of forged documents, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than three years but which may extend to 10 years and shall also be liable to fine of Rs 2 lakh which may extend to Rs 5 lakh.

Vij said now no travel agent can operate without registration.

The statement of objects and reasons of the bill said that it has come to government's notice that innocent and unemployed youth of Haryana were being lured into traps of illegal immigration on a large scale through illegitimate means.

Unscrupulous and unregistered travel agents deceive such persons by promising them easy and quick immigration to foreign countries. These agents promise to arrange work visas, work permits, study visa through offer letter from universities and colleges in foreign countries, but in many cases, they fail to deliver on their promises, as per the bill.

They charge exorbitant fees and demand huge amount of money at different stages, it said.

Many a time, these agents send innocent persons to foreign countries illegally and such persons are caught and put behind bars by the police of those countries. Therefore, there is a dire need to curb the illegal activities of such travel agents, as per the bill.

The state assembly also passed the Haryana Registration and Regulation of Private Coaching Institutes Bill, 2024.

Under the provisions of the bill, which was moved in the House by Higher Education Minister Mool Chand Sharma, a private coaching institute violating the proposed law, ''shall be liable for each such violation with a fine of Rs 25,000 for the first violation and Rs 1 lakh for the subsequent violation. And in case the violation still continues then the registration of private coaching institute shall be cancelled''.

No private coaching institute shall publish any misleading advertisement or give false information relating to the coaching, as per the bill.

There shall be an Authority in each district to register and regulate the private coaching institutions and shall comprise of members including Deputy Commissioner, who will be the chairperson.

Grievance redressal cells will also be set up at district level.

As per the bill, the ''private coaching institute'' means an institute in a single premises which includes tuition centre established, run or administered by any person or body of persons, a company, society or trust providing study programme for competitive examinations, but does not include individual home tuition up to 50 students per day.

Meanwhile, among other bills, the state assembly also passed the Haryana Honourable Disposal of Dead Body Bill, 2024, which has provision of punishing those who used a body for remonstration.

Home Minister Vij had on Monday told the assembly that he was withdrawing the bill for a day to change the phrasing objected to by some members. The bill was passed by the assembly on Wednesday after necessary amendments.

The House also passed The Haryana State Sports Associations (Registration and Regulation) Bill, 2024, to oversee the registration and regulation of working of sports associations by establishing regulatory bodies at both the state and regional levels.

The House also passed the Hisar Metropolitan Development Authority Bill, 2024.

According to the bill, rapid growth of Hisar metropolitan area and its emergence as a nucleus for economic development has thrown up challenges in urban governance, infrastructure deficit, decentralized decision making, and independently created townships which if ignored can affect the quality of life and well-being of the citizens of Hisar.

The existing legal architecture for governance of the Hisar metropolitan area has several shortcomings that need to be addressed, as per the bill.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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