MINISTRY OF CORPORATE AFFAIRS(MCA)
Moratorium Inapplicable To Contracts Entered Into By The CD Under Oilfields (Regulation And Development) Act
The Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Government of India, has issued a notification dated 14.06.2023, notifying that Section 14(1) of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (“IBC”) would be inapplicable to agreements/transactions/arrangements entered into by the Corporate Debtor under the Oilfields (Regulation and Development) Act, 1948.
Mere resignation of an auditor from a company doesn’t absolve him from his responsibility to report suspected fraud: NFRA
NFRA has released a circular clarifying that auditors are not fulfilling the statutory obligation relating to fraud reporting as required by the Companies Act, 2013. SA and CARO require auditors to report fraud and/or suspected fraud to the Central Government and the Board/Audit Committee. NFRA has stated that resigning from an audit engagement does not absolve auditors of their reporting obligations relating to fraud in Form ADT-4.
RESERVE BANK OF INDIA (RBI)
RBI issues master direction on Minimum Capital Requirements for Operational Risk
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on June 26 issued a master direction on Minimum Capital Requirements for Operational Risk, which will require a specified commercial bank to hold sufficient regulatory capital against its exposures arising from operational risk.
RBI says banks can offer NDF contracts to resident Indians for hedging
Reserve Bank of India has issued rules allowing banks to offer non-deliverable forward contracts involving the rupee to resident Indians. These contracts can be issued to non-retail residents for hedging purposes and settled in Indian rupees, the Reserve Bank of India said in a notification.
Challenge To Recovery Notice U/S 13(2) SARFAESI Act Lies Before DRT And Not Civil Court, Unless Plaint Alleges Fraud: Bombay High Court
In the matter of Regional Manager, Union Bank of India and Anr. v. M/s Punya Coal Road Lines and Ors., the Bombay High Court has held that once a secured creditor issues demand notice under section 13(2) of the SARFAESI Act, 2002, the civil court’s jurisdiction is barred, and any challenge to the notice comes under the domain of the Debts Recovery Tribunal (DRT).
SEBI proposes to tighten disclosures norms regarding ownership, economic interest, and control for FPIs
SEBI in its board meeting has proposed to tighten disclosure norms for foreign portfolio investors regarding ownership, economic interest, and control. These disclosures include FPIs holding more than 50% of their Indian equity AUM in a single Indian corporate group or FPIs that individually or along with their investor group hold more than Rs 25,000 crore of equity AUM in the Indian markets. Further, certain entities are exempted from such additional disclosures.
SEBI introduces UPI block facility
The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has introduced a new process for trading in the secondary market called the UPI block facility. This facility aims to enhance the protection of cash collateral by integrating the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) approved Unified Payments Interface (UPI) mandate service of single-block-and-multiple-debits with the secondary market trading and settlement process.
SEBI releases SEBI LODR (Second Amendment) Regulations, 2023
The SEBI on 14.06.2023 notified the SEBI (Listing Obligations and Disclosure Requirements) (Second Amendment) Regulations, 2023. These amendments are in line with the consultation papers that SEBI previously released on time to time basis. The amendments aim to strengthen corporate governance at listed entities by empowering shareholders, streamlining the disclosure requirements for material events or information and strengthening compliance.
FOREIGN DIRECT INVESTMENT
India and UK Working on Promoting Trade in Services Through an Agreement
India and the UK are working on a free trade agreement to promote trade in services. The agreement aims to provide equal treatment for companies from both countries in sectors such as finance, education, and skilled professionals. The focus is on simplifying visa processes, facilitating foreign direct investment, and ensuring national treatment for businesses. The negotiations have covered 26 policy chapters, with 14 chapters already closed. India’s focus includes accounting, auditing, legal, tourism, engineering, and architecture, while the UK is interested in petroleum, ports, services, roads and highways, and computer software.
PLI Scheme for Manufacturing Sector seen Rs 62,500 Crores Investment
India’s production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme has attracted investments of Rs 62,500 crore in sectors such as mobile manufacturing, pharma, medical devices, and food processing. Approved applications for the PLI scheme in fourteen sectors stand at 733. The investments have led to incremental production worth over Rs 6.75 lakh crore generating 3.25 lakh new jobs and boosting exports by Rs 2.56 lakh crore. Incentives totaling Rs 2,900 crore were distributed in 2022-23, and the PLI scheme has contributed to increased foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows and supporting 176 MSMEs across various sectors.
If Development Agreement Not Duly Stamped, RERA Should Refer It To Registrar Of Stamps; Not Dismiss Application For Registration: MP High Court
Recently, the Madhya Pradesh High Court at Indore set aside an order passed by Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) which dismissed an application under Section 4 of Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 for registration of a project for not being properly stamped.
Arbitrators view sacrosanct, should not be substituted: Calcutta High Court
The Calcutta High Court in the matter of, “Jaldhi Overseas Pte Ltd v. Steer Overseas Pvt Limited”, recently held that an arbitrator’s view is sacrosanct and should not be substituted with an alternate opinion that a court may possibly have on re-appreciation of evidence. The judge ruled that a court should not substitute its own view for the arbitrator’s view or venture beyond a preliminary determination of the matter unless it is manifestly evident that there existed no arbitral agreement.
Arbitration Clause in a contract will perish with its novation: Delhi High Court.
In the case of B.L. Kashyap and Sons Ltd. v. Mist Avenue (P) Ltd., the High Court of Delhi has held that an arbitration clause contained in an agreement would perish with its novation if the novated agreement does not contain any arbitration clause. The bench of Justice Prateek Jalan declined to interfere with the award passed by the arbitrator, which held that the parties cannot rely on the arbitration clause from the original contract if they had put an end to it as if it never existed and substituted a new contract to it.
Power ministry revises biomass co-firing policy to promote sustainable energy practices
To promote sustainable energy practices, the ministry of power recently announced the revision of biomass co-firing policy. This revision will enable power plants to purchase biomass pellets at benchmark prices, reducing import dependencies and enhancing the adoption of biomass as a renewable energy source. The decision would encourage farmers, entrepreneurs as well as thermal power utilities to strive to establish a sustainable biomass ecosystem, achieve the targets for co-firing, reduce stubble burning and help ensure a cleaner and greener future.
Bureau of Energy Efficiency sets up demonstration centre to advance clean technology
In a significant step towards promoting clean technologies and addressing the urgent need for energy efficiency in various industry sectors, the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) has established a demonstration centre under the guidance of the ministry of power. The centre aims to enhance capacity-building efforts and serve as a one-stop solution provider for energy professionals across India. Furthermore, it will facilitate knowledge exchange, disseminate best practices, and provide crucial inputs for national energy policies.
Centre launches scheme to leverage emerging tech in power sector
The Ministry of Power and the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy on Wednesday jointly launched Mission on Advanced and High-Impact Research (MAHIR) to leverage emerging technology and drive innovation in the power sector. Mission on Advanced and High-Impact Research aims to identify and develop cutting-edge technologies in the power sector, with the goal of making India a global manufacturing hub and fuelling future economic growth.
FOOD AND BEVERAGES
Directions to all FSSAI Notified laboratories under section 43(1) and 43(2) of FSS Act 2006 for Organic testing
It has been decided by the Government to promote organic products in India by encouraging and strengthening cooperative societies. The success of this depends on the reliable testing to ensure their authenticity of the organic products. Therefore, all food testing laboratories need to optimize their facilities and procedures to handle organic testing efficiently and accurately.
Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change enforces Plastic Waste Management Rules regarding the single use plastic items
The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change has released notification for the manufacture, import, stocking, distribution, sale and uses of Single use plastic Items. Any item less than 100 micron such as straw, trays, packing films is banned and compliance is sought from the Authorities.
INFRASTRUCTRE & CONSTRUCTION
Solatium & Interest As Per Land Acquisition Act Payable For Acquisitions Made Under National Highways Act: Kerala High Court
The Kerala High Court recently rebuked the National Highway Authority of India for ‘unnecessarily burdening the courts’ with litigations even in the face of settled principles of law. The Court made the above observation while reiterating that provisions of the Land Acquisition Act 1894 relating to solatium and interest contained in Sections 23(1-A) and (2) and interest payable in terms of Section 28 proviso will apply to acquisitions made under the National Highways Act 1956.
Union Cabinet approves CITIIS 2.0, under the Smart Cities mission
The government has approved the City Investments to Innovate, Integrate and Sustain (CITIIS) 2.0 that seeks to support projects promoting a circular economy with focus on integrated urban management. The CITIIS 2.0, approved by the Union Cabinet at a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will run for four years beginning this fiscal in partnership with the French Development Agency (AFD), Kreditanstalt fur Wiederaufbau (KfW), the European Union (EU), and the National Institute of Urban Affairs (NIUA).
GAMING AND CRYPTOCURRENCY
GST Council to discuss measures to curb evasion, Group of Ministers (GoM) report on online gaming in July 11 meet
The GST Council on July 11 will discuss some more measures to tighten the noose on fake registration and fraudulent generation of input tax credit (ITC) as it looks to check tax evasion. The 50th meeting of the GST Council is scheduled on July 11. The Council will also discuss the GoM report on online gaming, casinos and horse racing and will circulate it to the states soon. The GoM submitted its report to the Council in December in 2022, but the Council has not taken it up for discussion.
MERGERS & ACQUISTION
CCI to widen scrutiny of Air India-Vistara merger
Anti-trust regulator Competition Commission of India has decided to review the merger of Air India and Vistara, which may potentially delay the process. CCI has not given expedited permission to the process and have instead sent a notice to the two airlines seeking reason on why an investigation of the impact of the merger should not be conducted.
Tech-giant Google challenges NCLAT order in Supreme Court
Tech-giant Google on Tuesday appealed the Supreme Court challenging the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal’s (NCLAT) order upholding the fine of Rs 1,338 crore imposed on the search giant by the Competition Commission ofIndia (CCI). NCLAT had sustained the order saying the competition watchdog’s order did not violate the principles of natural justice.
Setback to Coal India: Competition Act applies to PSUs, says Supreme Court
In a setback to Coal India and its three subsidiaries, the Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that the Competition Act 2002 applies to the public sector companies and they cannot be treated differently than others who might enjoy the monopoly of production, distribution and sale of natural resources.
Identifying false, misleading news by Fact Check Unit will not lead to automatic taking down, aggrieved can seek legal remedy: Centre to HC
The Union government told the Bombay High Court that identification of misleading or false content by the Fact Check Unit (FCU) does not result in its automatic taking down and the aggrieved party would be entitled to pursue legal remedy with the competent court being the final arbiter in the matter.
Innovation and growth with Startups IPR scheme
During the National Intellectual Property Festival, the union minister of state (Independent Charge) for science and technology, Jitendra Singh talked about the Startups Intellectual Property Protection (SIPP) scheme. He emphasised on the amalgamation of digital repository of traditional knowledge and heritage with the modern scientific innovation.
Assessing Officer Has No Jurisdiction To Reopen Assessment If Dispute Is Settled Under Kar Vivad Samadhan Scheme: Bombay High Court
The Bombay High Court has held that there is no jurisdiction for an assessing officer to reopen an assessment if a dispute is settled under the Kar Vivad Samadhan Scheme (KVSS). The bench of Justice K. R. Shriram and Justice M. M. Sathaye has observed that upon a declaration being made, tax arrears being determined, and paid, and a certificate issued under the KVSS, there is no jurisdiction for the Assessing Officer to reopen the assessment by a notice except where it is found that any material particular furnished in the declaration is found to be false.
Income Tax department tweaks disclosure norms for charitable institutions claiming exemption
The income tax department has made changes to the disclosure requirements for charitable institutions claiming income tax exemption. Effective from October 1, the amendments to the Income Tax Rules mandate that charitable institutions must provide additional details regarding the nature of their activities. Specifically, they will now be required to disclose whether their activities are categorized as charitable, religious, or a combination of both religious and charitable.