The bill to amend the Consumer Affairs Authority Act, No. 9 of 2003 is scheduled to be presented in Parliament today.
State Minister of Co-operative Services and Consumer Protection Lasantha Alagiyawanna said following Parliament approval to the bill, strict legal action will be taken against persons who sell goods above the Maximum Retail Prices announced by the government.
State Minister Alagiyawanna said fines imposed on first and second-time offenders will be increased after the passing of the bill in Parliament.
The State Minister said persons who sell goods above government-stipulated rates are being fined between Rs. 1,000 and Rs. 10,000 at present and in future first-time offenders will be charged between Rs. 100,000 to Rs. 1 million. He added in future if an individual commits the offence for the second time, a fine of between Rs. 200,000 to Rs. 2 million will be levied.
Furthermore, fines on company operators or establishments will be increased from between Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 100,000 to Rs. 1 million to Rs. 10 million for a first offence while second-time offenders will be fined between Rs. 2 million to Rs. 20 million.
The State Minister said according to amended regulations, a magistrate can impose a fine and a six-month prison sentence for first and second-time offenders.