Weapons of Mass Destruction and their Delivery Systems (Amendment) Bill

On August 1, 2022 “Weapons of Mass Destruction and their Delivery Systems (Amendment) Bill 2022” was passed by Parliament. The bill seeks to ban funding of weapons of mass destruction. Bill has been directed by External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar. It was passed in Rajya Sabha through a voice vote. It was approved in Lok Sabha in April 2022.

Important provisions of the bill include;

  • This bill passed in view that; the current law covers only the trading of weapons. It does not cover its financing.
  • It is in line with the mandates of Financial Action task Force, which asks countries to ensure that asset financing for such weapons is prohibited.
  • The Bill empowers the Union government to freeze, seize or attach financial assets and economic resources of people, who are engaged in activities related to weapons of Mass Destruction.
  • Amendment will add a new section 12A in the existing law. According to this section, “parson shall not finance any activity, which is prohibited in the act”.

The Weapons of Mass Destruction and their Delivery Systems (Prohibition of Unlawful Activities) Act was passed in 2005. It only puts ban on manufacturing of weapons of mass destruction.

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF):

FATF is an inter-governmental body, set up in 1989. It was set up during G7 Summit in Paris. FATF was established with the objective of setting standards and promote effective implementation of regulatory, legal and operational steps to combat money laundering and terror financing. Secretariat of FATF is located at Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), which is headquartered in Paris.  There are 37 member countries, including India.

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