The Poison Act


  • Earlier Schedule E – Drug & cosmetic Rules, 1945: list of poison, but dropped in: 1982.
  • The Poison act, 1919 was passed on 3rd September, 1919 with the objective of “Consolidating and amending the laws regulating the import and sale of poisons.
  • The act of 1919 replaced the Poison act of 1904.
  • State Government is empowered to make rules regarding the possession and sale of poison.
  • Dover’s powder being not scheduled as a poison under Punjab Poisons Possession and Sale Rules 1966, its possession is not an offence under the Act.

Import of Poisons

The Central Government may prohibit the import of any specified poison across any defined customs frontier into India, except under and in accordance with the conditions of a license, and may make rules to regulate the grant of such licenses.

Possession for sale and resale of poisons

State Government may make rules within the whole or any part of territories.

Such rules may provide for –

  • The grant of licenses: any specified poisons to whole sale or retail and fixing of the fees paid.
  • The classes of persons to be sold.
  • The maximum quantity.
  • Sales register to be maintained.
  • The safe custody of such poison and labeling of vessels.
  • The inspection and examination of any poison when possessed for sale by any vendor.

State Government Role:

  • May take rules to regulate the possession of any specified poison in any local area.
  • Any breach in the rule, then imprisonment 1 year or with fine 1000 or both is applicable.


  • Anyone who imports or possesses or sells any poison except as prescribed under act.
  • Imprisonment for 3 months or fine Rs. 500.00 or both is applicable. (1st Conviction)
  • 6 months or Rs. 1000.00 or both


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Sushil Kumar

Sales - Institutional (Himalaya)
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