Bimonthly Legal Tablet : Volume 3 Issue 3
Bimonthly Legal Tablet
Volume 3, Issue 3, May 05, 2013
When the Supreme Court was moved from
the old capital of Philadelphia to
Washington, D.C., in 1800, the Government
failed to provide the justices with law books.
Said Robert H. Jackson, author of The
Supreme Court System of Government,
“ accounts for the high quality of early
|Law & Policy|
Law & Policy
Notifications & Circulars (March – April), 2013
A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 87 dated March 05, 2013 issued by the Reserve Bank of India,
Foreign Exchange Department regarding ‘External Commercial Borrowings (ECB) Policy –
Corporates under Investigation’
It has been decided to permit all entities to avail of ECBs under the automatic route as per the
current norms, notwithstanding the pending investigations/ adjudications/ appeals by the law
enforcing agencies, without prejudice to the outcome of such investigations/ adjudications/
appeals. Accordingly, in case of all applications where the borrowing entity has indicated about
the pending investigations/ adjudications/ appeals, Authorised Dealers while approving the
proposal shall intimate the concerned agencies by endorsing the copy of the approval letter. The
same procedure will be followed by the Reserve Bank of India also while approving such
A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 88 dated March 12, 2013 issued by the Reserve Bank of India,
Foreign Exchange Department regarding ‘Write-Off of unrealized export bills – Export of Goods
and Services – Simplification of procedure’
It has now been decided to effect, subject to the stipulations regarding surrender of incentives
prior to ‘write-off’ adduced in the A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 03
dated July 22, 2010 the following liberalization in the limits of ‘writeoffs’
of unrealized export bills:
|i||Self ‘write-off’ by an exporter
(Other than Status Holder
|ii||Self ‘write-off’ by Status
|iii||‘Write-off’ by Authorized
*of the total export proceeds realized during the previous calendar year.
The above limits will be related to total export proceeds realized
during the previous calendar year and will be cumulatively available in
a year. The above ‘write-off’ will be subject to certain conditions like,
the relevant amount has remained outstanding for more than one
year; satisfactory documentary evidence is furnished in support of the
exporter having made all efforts to realize the dues; the case falls
under any of the categories specified in this Circular, etc..
The respective AD banks may forward a statement in form EBW to the
Regional Office of Reserve Bank under whose jurisdiction they are
functioning, indicating details of write-offs allowed under this Circular.
A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 94 dated April 01, 2013 issued by the
Reserve Bank of India, Foreign Exchange Department regarding
‘Foreign investment in India by SEBI registered FIIs in Government
Securities and Corporate Debt’ It has been decided to merge the existing debt limits into two broad
categories as under:
i. Government Debt limit: Government securities of USD 25 billion by
merging the existing sub-limits under Government securities ;and
ii. Corporate Debt Limit: Corporate debt of USD 51 billion by merging
the existing sub-limits of Corporate debt .
A summary of the revised position is as below:
|FIIs, QFIs and Long
registered with SEBI –
Foreign Central Banks
USD 5.5 billion
within the limit
of USD 25
referred to in
Schedule 5 of
3rd May 2000
|FIIs, QFIs, Long terms
with SEBI – SWFs,
Foreign Central Banks
USD 3.5 billion
within the limit
of USD 51
The Non-Resident Indians were not subject to any limit for investment in
Government Securities as well as corporate debt. They will continue to
be regulated as per extant guidelines. Consolidated FDI Policy, Master Circular 1 of 2013, issued by the Government of India, Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Department ofIndustrial Policy & Promotion (FC Section)
The Government of India, Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Department
of Industrial Policy & Promotion (FC Section) has issued the Consolidated
FDI Policy, effective from April 05, 2013 (‘FDI Policy’). Few key changes
brought about by the FDI Policy are as below:
i. A citizen of Pakistan or an entity incorporated in Pakistan can
invest, only under the Government route, in sectors/activities other
than defence, space an atomic energy and sectors/activities
prohibited for foreign investment.
ii. FDI up to 100% is now permitted in Single-Brand Product Retail
Trading by only one non-resident entity, whether owner of the
brand or otherwise, under the Government route subject to certain
terms and conditions.
iii. FDI up to 51% is now permitted in Multi-Brand Retail Trading under
the Government route, subject to certain terms and conditions.
iv. Foreign airlines are permitted FDI up to 49% in the capital of Indian
companies in Civil Aviation Sector, operating scheduled and nonscheduled
air transport, under the automatic/Government route
subject to certain terms and conditions.
v. FDI up to 49% is permitted in Power Exchanges registered under
the Central Electricity Regulatory Commission (Power Market)
Regulations, 2010, under the Government route, subject to
certain terms and conditions.
vi. FDI up to 74% of paid-up capital of Asset Reconstruction
Companies has been permitted, subject to certain terms and
conditions. Further, total shareholding of an individual FII shall not
exceed 10% of the total paid-up capital.
A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 98 dated April 09, 2013 issued by the
Reserve Bank of India, Foreign Exchange Department regarding ‘TradeCredits for Imports into India – Review of all-in-cost ceiling’
It has been decided that all-in-cost ceiling as specified under paragraph
4 of the A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 28 dated September 11, 2012 will
continue to be applicable till June 30, 2013 and subject to review
thereafter. All other aspects of Trade Credit policy remain unchanged.
A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 99 dated April 23, 2013 issued by the
Reserve Bank of India, Foreign Exchange Department regarding
‘Investment by Navratna Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs), OVL andOIL in unincorporated entities in oil sector abroad’
Vide notification no. FEMA.120/RB-2004 dated July 7, 2004 (the Notification), as amended from time to time,
and A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 59 dated May 18, 2007 and para 3(i)
of A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 48 dated June 03, 2008, Navratna Public
Sector Undertakings (‘PSUs’), ONGC Videsh Ltd (‘OVL’) and Oil India Ltd
(‘OIL’) were allowed to invest in overseas unincorporated entities in oil
sector (for exploration and drilling for oil and natural gas, etc.), which
were duly approved by the Government of India, without any limits under the automatic route.
It has now been decided that such facility is also extended to the
overseas investments in the incorporated JV / WOS in oil sector (for
exploration and drilling for oil and natural gas, etc.) by the PSUs, OVL
and OIL, which are duly approved by the Government of India, without
any limits under the automatic route.
A.P. (DIR Series) Circular No. 100 dated April 25, 2013 issued by the
Reserve Bank of India, Foreign Exchange Department regarding
‘Overseas Direct Investments – Clarification’
This circular has been issued in light of RBI’s observation regarding
eligible Indian parties using overseas direct investments (‘ODI’)
automatic route to set up certain structures facilitating trading in
currencies, securities and commodities. It has come to the notice of the
RBI that such structures having equity participation of Indian parties
have also started offering financial products linked to Indian Rupee
(e.g. non-deliverable trades involving foreign currency, rupee exchange
rates, stock indices linked to Indian market, etc.).
It is clarified that any overseas entity having equity participation
directly / indirectly shall not offer such products without the specific
approval of the RBI given that currently Indian Rupee is not fully
convertible and such products could have implications for the exchange
rate management of the country. Any incidence of such product
facilitation would be treated as a contravention of the Foreign
Exchange Management (Transfer or Issue of any Foreign Security)
Regulations, 2004 and would consequently attract action under the
relevant provisions of the Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999.
The Competition Commission of India (Procedure in regard to the transaction of business relating to combinations) Regulations, 2011 asamended on April 04, 2013
The Competition Commission of India (Procedure in regard to the
transaction of business relating to combinations) Regulations, 2011
(‘Combination Regulations’) stand amended vide The Competition
Commission of India (Procedure in regard to the transaction of business
relating to combinations) Amendment Regulations, 2013 (No. 1 of 2013)
(‘Amendment Regulations’), as notified on April 04, 2013.
Regulation 4 of the Combination Regulations deals with ‘categories of
transactions not likely to have appreciable adverse effect on
competition in India’ and clarifies that since the categories of
combinations mentioned in Schedule I to the Combination Regulations
are ordinarily not likely to cause an appreciable adverse effect on
competition in India, notice under Section 6(2) of the Competition Act,
2002 need not normally be filed. The Amendment Regulations have
inserted the following category in Schedule I to the Combination
i. An acquisition of additional shares or voting rights of an enterprise
by the acquirer or its group, not resulting in gross acquisition of
more than 5% of the shares or voting rights of such enterprise in a
financial year, where the acquirer or its group, prior to acquisition,
already holds 25% or more shares or voting rights of the
enterprise, but does not hold 50% or more of the shares or voting
rights of the enterprise, either prior to or after such acquisition:
Provided that such acquisition does not result in acquisition of sole or
joint control of such enterprise by the acquirer or its group.
The Amendment Regulations have substituted the following categories in Schedule I to the Combination Regulations:
i. An acquisition of stock-in-trade, raw materials, stores and spares,
trade receivables and other similar current assets in the ordinary
course of business.
ii. An acquisition of shares or voting rights or assets, by one person or
enterprise, of another person or enterprise within the same group,
except in cases where the acquired enterprise is jointly controlled
by enterprises that are not part of the same group.
iii. A merger or amalgamation of two enterprises where one of the
enterprises has more than 50% shares or voting rights of the other
enterprise, and/or merger or amalgamation of enterprises in which
more than 50% shares or voting rights in each of such enterprises
are held by enterprise(s) within the same group:
Provided that the transaction does not result in transfer from joint
control to sole control.
In addition to the above, category (8A) of Schedule I has been omitted
vide the Amendment Regulations.
Bills Passed in the budget session of Parliament for 2013
The Criminal Law (Amendment ) Bill, 2013
The Criminal Law (Amendment ) Bill 2013 was passed by the Lok Sabha
on 19 March 2013, and by the Rajya Sabha on 21 March 2013. It
provides for amendment of the Indian Penal Code , Indian Evidence Act
and Code of Criminal Procedure 1973 on laws relating to sexual
offences. The Bill received Presidential assent on 2 April 2013 and was
deemed to come into force from 3 February 2013. It was originally an
Ordinance promulgated by the President of India on 3 February 2013.
Under the new Criminal Law ( Amendment ) Act , 2013 :
i. the act of rape is newly described with the use of very specific
physical terminology, but in contrast to the Ordinance, the
amended provision on rape is kept as a gender-specific crime,
only committed by men.
ii. the punishment on conviction of rape is in general from seven
years to life imprisonment and a fine, but if certain
circumstances apply (e.g., rapes committed by police officers or
public servants of women in their custody; rapes by a relative,
guardian, or teacher of a woman vis a vis whom they are in a
position of trust or authority; or rapes against women under the
age of 16) the punishment upon conviction will be from ten years
to life imprisonment and liability to a fine; capital punishment
may be applied to a rapist if the act causes the victim’s death or
leaves her in a permanent vegetative state, );
iii. gang rape is punishable with a prison term of from 20 years to
life (meaning the remainder of the offender’s natural life) and a
iv. a new offense of sexual harassment is inserted as section 354A
of the Indian Penal Code.
v. for the first time, voyeurism and stalking are defined as offenses
vi. a punishment ranging from 10 years to life imprisonment and
liability to a fine will be imposed on those convicted of trafficking
a minor, and if more than one minor is involved, the applicable
sentence will be 14 years’ imprisonment, extendable to life
imprisonment, and liability to a fine.;
vii. the punishment for an acid attack that causes harm to the victim
will be a minimum term of 10 years’ imprisonment, extendable
to a life term, while conviction on voluntarily throwing or
attempting to throw acid with the intention of causing damage
will incur a penalty of five to seven years.
viii. public servants who knowingly disobey legal provisions
regulating the manner in which they are to conduct an
investigation into an offense or who fail to record information
given to them under relevant provisions of the Code of Criminal
Procedure may be subject to a punishment of from six months to
two years of imprisonment and a fine.; and
ix. persons in charge of public or private hospitals will be subject to
a prison term of up to one year and/or a fine for non-treatment
The Protection of Women from Sexual Harassment at Workplace Bill2010
The Bill which seeks to protect women from sexual harassment at their
place of work, was passed by the Lok Sabha on 3 September 2012 and
the Rajya Sabha on February 26, 2013. The Bill got the assent of the
President on 23 April 2013.
Under the newly enacted Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace
(Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal)Act,2013 ,the following are the
i. The Act defines sexual harassment at the work place and creates
a mechanism for redressal of complaints. It also provides
safeguards against false or malicious charges.
ii. The definition of “aggrieved woman”, who will get protection
under the Act is extremely wide to cover all women, irrespective
of her age or employment status, whether in the organised or
unorganised sectors, public or private and covers clients,
customers and domestic workers as well.
iii. While the “workplace” in the Vishaka guidelines is confined to the
traditional office set-up where there is a clear employeremployee
relationship, the Act goes much further to include
organisations, department, office, branch unit etc in the public
and private sector, organized and unorganized, hospitals, nursing
homes, educational institutions, sports institutes, stadiums, sports
complex and any place visited by the employee during the course
of employment including the transportation.
iv. Every employer is required to constitute an Internal Complaints Committee at each office or branch with 10 or more employees. The District Officer is required to constitute a Local Complaints Committee at each district, and if required at the block level.
v. The Complaints Committees have the powers of civil courts for
vi. The Complaints Committees are required to provide for
conciliation before initiating an inquiry, if requested by the
vii. The Committee is required to complete the inquiry within a time
period of 90 days. On completion of the inquiry, the report will be
sent to the employer or the District Officer, as the case may be,
they are mandated to take action on the report within 60 days.
viii. Penalties have been prescribed for employers. Non-compliance
with the provisions of the Act shall be punishable with a fine of up
to 50,000. Repeated violations may lead to higher penalties and
cancellation of licence or registration to conduct business.
P. RADHAKRISHNA MURTHY Vs. M/S. N.B.C.C. LTD.
Held: The Hon’ble Supreme Court has held that where the agreement between the parties does not prohibit grant of interest and where a party claims interest and that dispute (along with the claim for principal amount or independently) is referred to the Arbitrator, he shall have the power to award interest pendente lite. This is for the reason that in such a case it must be presumed that interest was an implied term of the agreement between the parties and therefore when the parties refer all their disputes — or refer the dispute as to interest as such — to the Arbitrator, he shall have the power to award interest.
Shivdev Kaur (D) By Lrs. & Ors. v. R.S. Grewal
The Hon’ble Supreme Court has held that “if a Hindu female has been given only a “life interest”, through Will or gift or any other document referred to in Section 14 of the Hindu Succession Act, 1956 , the said rights would not stand crystallized into the absolute ownership as interpreting the provisions to the effect that she would acquire absolute ownership/title into the property by virtue of the provisions of Section 14(1) of the Act 1956, the provisions of Sections 14(2) and 30 of the Act 1956 would become otios. Section 14(2) carves out an exception to rule provided in sub- section (1) thereof, which clearly provides that if a property has been acquired by a Hindu female by a Will or gift, giving her only a “life interest”, it would remain the same even after commencement of the Act 1956, and such a Hindu female cannot acquire absolute title.”
S. Kesari Hanuman Goud Chennai Vs. Anjum Jehan & Ors (Civil Appeal No 2885-2887 of 2005) decided on 10.04.2013
The Hon’ble Supreme Court has held that it is a settled legal proposition that the power of attorney holder cannot depose in place of the Principal. Provisions of Order III, Rules 1 and 2 CPC empower the holder of the Power of Attorney to “act” on behalf of the principal. The word “acts”
employed therein is confined only to “acts” done by the Power-of-
Attorney Holder, in exercise of the power granted to him by virtue of the
instrument. The term “acts”, would not include deposing in place and
instead of the Principal. In other words, if the Power-of-Attorney Holder
has preferred any “acts” in pursuance of the Power of Attorney, he may
depose for the Principal in respect of such acts, but he cannot depose for
the Principal for acts done by the Principal, and not by him. Similarly, one
cannot depose for the Principal in respect of a matter, as regards which,
only the Principal can have personal knowledge and in respect of which,
the Principal is entitled to be cross-examined.
Ramji Gupta & Anr. Vs. Gopi Krishan Agrawal (D) & Ors. (CIVIL APPEAL
NO.629 of 2004) decided on 11.04.2013
The Hon’ble Supreme Court has held that in order to operate as res
judicata, the finding must be such, that it disposes of a matter that is
directly and substantially in issue in the former suit, and that the said
issue must have been heard and finally decided by the court trying such
suit. A matter which is collaterally or incidentally in issue for the purpose
of deciding a matter which is directly in issue in the case, cannot be made
the basis for a plea of res judicata. A question regarding title in a small
cause suit, may be regarded as incidental only to the substantial issue in
the suit, and therefore, when a finding as regards title to immovable
property is rendered by a Small Causes Court, res judicata cannot be
pleaded as a bar in the subsequent regular suit, for the determination or
enforcement of any right or interest in the immovable property.
Kanhaiya Lal &Ors. Vs. State of Rajasthan (Criminal Appeal No. 1108 of 2006) decided on 22.04.2013
Held: The Hon’ble Supreme Court has held that it is settled in law that
mere delay in lodging the First Information Report cannot be regarded
by itself as fatal to the case of the prosecution. However, it is obligatory
on the part of the court to take notice of the delay and examine, in the
backdrop of the case, whether any acceptable explanation has been
offered, by the prosecution and if such an explanation has been offered
whether the same deserves acceptance being found to be satisfactory.
Whether the delay creates a dent in the prosecution story and ushers in
suspicion has to be gathered by scrutinizing the explanation offered for
the delay in the light of the totality of the facts and circumstances.
N. Narayanan Vs. Adjudicating Officer, SEBI
Held: The Hon’ble Supreme Court has held that pledging the shares at
artificially inflated prices, based on inflated financial results and raising
loan on them would indicate that they had deliberately and with full
knowledge committed the illegality and hence the principle of
“actaexteriora indicant interiorasecreta” (meaning external actions
reveals inner secrets) applies with all force, a principle which this Court
applied in Sahara’s case. The Hon’ble Court has also held that SEBI, the
market regulator, has to deal sternly with companies and their Directors
indulging in manipulative and deceptive devices, insider trading etc. or
else they will be failing in their duty to promote orderly and healthy
growth of the Securities market. Economic offence, people of this
country should know, is a serious crime which, if not properly dealt with,
as it should be, will affect not only country’s economic growth, but also
slow the inflow of foreign investment by genuine investors and also
casts a slur on India’s securities market. Message should go that our
country will not tolerate “market abuse” and that we are governed by
the “Rule of Law”. Fraud, deceit, artificiality, SEBI should ensure, have
no place in the securities market of this country and ‘market security’ is
our motto. SEBI has a duty to protect investors, individual and collective,
against opportunistic behavior of Directors and Insiders of the listed
companies so as to safeguard market’s integrity.
Novartis AG Vs. Union of India & Others decided on
Held: The petition filed by Novartis AG was dismissed by the Supreme
Court and in this judgment the Court held that the test of efficacy in the
context of Section 3(d) of the Patent Act, 1970 would be different,
depending upon the result the product under consideration is desired or
intended to produce. According to the Hon’ble Supreme Court
“…….With regard to the genesis of Section 3(d), and more particularly
the circumstances in which Section 3(d) was amended to make it even
more constrictive than before, we have no doubt that the “therapeutic
efficacy” of a medicine must be judged strictly and narrowly. Our
inference that the test of enhanced efficacy in case of chemical
substances, especially medicine, should receive a narrow and strict
interpretation is based not only on external factors but there are
sufficient internal evidence that leads to the same view. It may be noted
that the text added to Section 3(d) by the 2005 amendment lays down
the condition of “enhancement of the known efficacy”. Section 2(1)(j)
the Patent Act, 1970 defines “invention” to mean, “a new product or
…”, but the new product in chemicals and especially pharmaceuticals
may not necessarily mean something altogether new or completely
unfamiliar or strange or not existing before.
Keerthy Krishnan vs. BPCL & Ors.
Case No. 8 of 2013 Dated: 10/04/2013
Held: Competition Commission of India (CCI) observed that the
allegations pertaining to reservation of routes for the truck
transportation service and fixing lower ceiling rates for distributors does
not amounts to tie-in arrangement which is in violation of Section 3(4).It
is the sole discretion of BPCL to decide as to how it wants to perform the
operation of distribution of LPG cylinders. It could distribute the goods
on its own or through a tender by hiring transport services. The decision
to introduce changes in the existing practice of delivery of LPG cylinders,
based on hiring transport services selected through a tender, to a new
model which is partly based on open tender and partly based on
agreement with its distributors cannot be inferred to be anticompetitive
or denial of market access.
BPCL is not the only service procurer in relevant product market and
relevant geographic i.e. “the services of transportation of goods by
trucks in the territory of India”. Besides BPCL, the services can also be
provided to other parties. Trucks are not only used for transportation of
LPG Cylinders but can also be used for transportation of other goods and
Furthermore, in relevant market, apart from other Oil Marketing
Companies there are also other players which hire the services of trucks
for transportation of goods by road. There are many other sectors which
depend upon truck transport agencies for transportation of their
products. Hence, BPCL is not a dominant procurer of the services of
trucks for transportation of goods.
Sonam Sharma vs. Apple Inc. USA & Ors.
Case No: 24/2011 Dated: 19/03/2013
Held: CCI dismissed charges of anti-competitive practices and abuse of
dominant market positions under Section 3 &4 of the Act, with respect
to agreements signed by telecom Airtel and Vodafone with Apple with
regard to the sale of iPhone smartphones in India. In the complaint, it
was alleged that Airtel and Vodafone got exclusive selling rights for
undisclosed number of years as a result of their respective agreements
with Apple and they had abused their dominant market positions.
Further, the said iPhones sold by Vodafone and Airtel were compulsorily
locked so that the handset purchased from either of them would work
only on their respective networks and none other. However, CCI did not
find Apple, Apple India, Vodafone and Bharti Airtel of being in a
dominant position in their respective relevant market. Relying on the
investigation by the Director General, Apple had also approached other
telecom operators like Reliance Communications, Idea Cellular, and Tata
DoCoMo for a distribution agreement to sell iPhone but it did not
materialize. Besides, the investigation did not reveal any appreciable
adverse effect on competition in the cellular service market in India. CCI
noted that no operator has more than 35 per cent market share in an
otherwise competitive mobile network service market.
Mar 2, 2013
1. The government of India has clarified that the tax authority will
accept a tax residency certificate (TRC) as sufficient proof that a
company is resident in Mauritius and will be eligible for benefits
under the tax treaty India has with the island nation.
2. Securities Exchange Board of India (Sebi) has allowed partial
conversion of Indian Depository Receipts (IDRs) into equity shares, a
move that will help attract more foreign companies to list on Indian
Mar 4, 2013
India will make it easier for foreign investors to claim tax concessions offered under bilateral tax treaties by simplifying the process of proving residency of the country from which the investment originates
Mar 5, 2013
1. The Intellectual Property Appellate Board has ruled in favour of the government’s decision to allow Natco Pharma to make inexpensive copies of Bayer’s anti-cancer drug Nexavar. By saying that Natco Pharma can produce Nexavar, a patented medicine used to treat liver and kidney cancers, the Intellectual Property Appellate Board has in effect endorsed the so-called compulsory licensing regime under which Indian companies can make cheap versions of expensive life-saving drugs.
2. The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion Board (DIPP) is planning to extend the provision of Compulsory Licences (CL) beyond cancer drugs, a move that will drastically reduce prices of key drugs, but at the same time, jeopardise the plans of multinational drug companies that are betting their growth on the rising number of non-communicable diseases in the country.
Mar 6, 2013
Securities and Exchange Board of India has formed a panel to review insider trading rules to curb the rising menace of the illegal practice.
Mar 8, 2013
1. India has launched a National internet Registry that will manage
internet protocol or IP address allocation and reduce the cost of
processing IP addresses.
2. The Right of Citizens for the Time –Bound Delivery of Goods and
Services and Redressal of their Grievances Bill 2011 has been
approved by the Cabinet which makes it mandatory for all
government departments and public authorities in India to publish
Citizen’s Charter stating the time within which specific services will
Mar 11, 2013
The government of India is likely to either increase or scrap the foreign
direct investment (FDI) limit in sectors where it is set at less than 100%,
in an ambitious reform to encourage foreign investors to loosen their
Mar 12, 2013
The Supreme Court of India has set aside a Delhi High Court order asking
the government to amend the rules to classify all non-life-saving drugs
and cosmetics as vegetarian and non-vegetarian with ‘V’ and ‘NV’ labels,
Mar 14, 2013
1. The Delhi High Court has stayed the Centre’s move to prohibit
mobile service providers from entering into roaming agreements
with other operators for the 3G network. The telecom de had
introduced a clause in the letter of intent (LoI) under which it was
specified that as per the unified licence, using 3G spectrum of
another operator was not permitted. Issuing notice to the Department of Telecommunications (DoT), Justice
Rajiv Shakdher sought the ministry’s response within four weeks and
stayed the clause 6 of the letter of intent.
1. Stalled highway projects worth 27,000 crore could get a fresh lease of life, with the Supreme Court ruling that requisite environmental approvals may be delinked from forest clearances.
2. The government does not plan to liberalise foreign direct investment (FDI) norms in the retail sector, said a senior government official, ruling out any change in policy in the near future and dashing hopes of global retail chains such as Walmart and Carrefour.
Mar 15, 2013
The RBI has allowed FIIs to offer their investments in g-secs and
corporate bonds as collateral to stock exchanges for derivatives
transactions. However, in the cash segment, FIIs can use their
investment in corporate bonds as collateral other than already
permitted collaterals. The operational guidelines in this regard will be
issued separately by market regulator Sebi.
Mar 19, 2013
1. The Delhi High Court on Monday allowed Bharti Airtel, one of the
largest cellular companies, to continue with its 3G intra-circle
roaming facilities till its final order. The DoT had earlier ordered
Airtel to stop intra-circle 3G roaming.
2. The law ministry has endorsed the actions of transfer pricing
officers who have sought to question the pricing of shares issued
by Indian arms of multinationals, but has referred the matter to
the attorney-general for a final view.
Mar 20, 2013
In Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons ($JW-A), the U.S. Supreme Court has
ruled that U.S. copyright law doesn’t restrict the importation of legitimate copyrighted works manufactured and sold overseas. As a
result, publishers cannot use U.S. copyright law to enforce their price
discrimination schemes of pricing copyrighted works on a per-nation
Mar 21, 2013
1. The government plans to significantly liberalise foreign direct
investment (FDI) norms for single-brand retail to attract big bucks
into the sector. The finance ministry has asked the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion (DIPP) to amend the policy to allow single-brand retailers to bring different brands belonging to the same product
line under one company.
2. India has inked a Tax Information Exchange Agreement with
Liechtenstein, intensifying its efforts to track black money stashed
abroad. “India and Liechtenstein have signed a Tax Information
Exchange Agreement (TIEA) on Thursday at Bern,” the finance
ministry said in a statement. India has been in negotiations with
the European nation on TIEA since 2009. The talks were initiated
after the government received data about Indian having bank
accounts in a bank in Lichenstein.
Apr 2, 2013
Monday’s Supreme Court judgement denying a patent to Novartis’ anticancer Glivec will surely trigger a wide-ranging debate on patent law
interpretation in India.
Apr 5, 2013
1. The Government of India has relaxed norms for seeking approval
from the Competition Commission of India. According to a
notification dated April 4, companies now do not have to file a notice
with the CCI for purchasing shares or voting rights in another entity if
the acquisition “is less than five percent of the shares or voting rights
of the company in a financial year”. The exemption is subject to the
condition that the acquirer already holds more than twenty five per
cent but less than fifty per cent of the shares or voting rights of the
2. On April 2, Securities Exchange Commission of America has issued
rules on use of social media by companies for disseminating nonpublic
material information. ” The provisions for the same regulations
are contained in Sebi’s Prohibition of Insider Trading Regulations,
under Schedule II, which spells a Code of Corporate Disclosure
Apr 7, 2013
The government has issued the comprehensive foreign direct investment circular, incorporating the changes made in single brand retail, multibrand retail, aviation and broadcasting sectors in the past one year.
Apr 10, 2013
The outcome on an appeal filed by Serdia Pharmaceutical, the Indian arm of French pharmaceutical major Servier, before the Bombay High Court is crucial for companies battling transfer pricing issues arising out of the cost of importing raw materials.
Transfer price is the price at which subsidiaries and divisions of a
company transact with each other. Several MNCs are grappling with tax demand in India as the tax office believe that the transactions did not happen at the arm’s length price — the price between persons other than associated enterprises.
Serdia imported active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) from its
associated enterprise and manufactured the final product in India.
Apr 11, 2013
The Supreme Court on Thursday permitted Bharti Airtel to continue
providing 3G services in seven circles in which it does not have licences,
through interconnectivity pacts with other operators, but disallowed the
company from enrolling new subscribers in these circles.
Apr 12, 2013
The Calcutta Income-Tax Appellate Tribunal (ITAT) held that payments to
websites such as Google, Yahoo, etc., for online advertisement are not
liable to tax in India.
Apr 17, 2013
Finance Minister P Chidambaram has said any bilateral investment
protection agreement has to be subject to jurisdiction of domestic legal
institutions and India will not allow it to be subjected to foreign courts or
Apr 18, 2013
1. The Securities & Exchange Board of India has sought powers to
regulate any pooling of funds for investments aggregating 100 crore
or more by an individual or a company. It has also asked the Centre to
grant it powers on the lines of agencies such as the Income-Tax
Department to seize assets of those violating securities laws.
2. The Supreme Court of India’s decision to let gram sabhas decide the
fate of Vedanta’s Niyamgiri mining project will make it difficult for the
government to divert forestland for industry without the consent of
tribals and local population. The Supreme Court’s ruling on Thursday
puts gram sabhas or village assemblies virtually at par with statutory
and regulatory bodies, and gives a broader prism of rights to
indigenous communities by defining the Forest Rights Act as more
than just heritable property rights.
Apr 24, 2013
The government of India is hoping to weed out corruption in land deals by amending the Registration Act, 1908. Changes include making it compulsory to register leases for a period of less than a year, mandatory registration of power of attorney transfers, registration of property in
the state where it is located and allowing inspection of registered
documents. Inter-ministerial consultations on the proposed
amendments have been completed. The Cabinet is expected to consider
the amendments for approval shortly.
Apr 25, 2013
The Competition Appellate Tribunal has reduced the penalty to 10 per cent of total fine imposed by the regulator CCI on nine explosives manufacturers for forming a cartel to bid for supply to Coal India. CCI had imposed a fine of Rs 58.83 crores on nine companies after finding that the companies formed a cartel to bid for supply of explosives to state-owned Coal India.
Apr 27, 2013
As the contentious immigration reform bill in the United States starts to take shape, India has taken up the issue with US authorities warning them that, if this bill becomes law, it will have adverse consequences for Indo-US ties.
Apr 28, 2013
The Companies Bill 2 012, which envisages a slew of changes to rules governing the functioning as well as social responsibilities of corporates, is yet to be taken up by the Upper House even though it was cleared by the Lok Sabha in December, 2012.
A government official said the Companies Bill is likely to be introduced
in the Rajya Sabha this week.
Apr 29, 2013
1. As per a list compiled by the Union Home Ministry as on April 23, as many as 85 bills submitted by various states since 2010 under
Article 200 read with Article 254(2) of the Constitution of India
remain pending for consideration of the President.
2. The Competition Appellate Tribunal (COMPAT) has dismissed an
appeal against a CCI order that cleared leading tyre manufacturers
of charges of forming a cartel.
The tribunal dismissed the petition of All India Tyre Dealer
Federation on technical grounds terming it as non-maintainable as
competition watchdog CCI had not passed the order under certain
sections of the Competition Act, 2002, that allow an appellant to
approach it against any CCI decision.
Apr 30, 2013
1. Government of India has ruled out imposition of wealth tax on
agriculture land as the Lok Sabha passed the Finance Bill a and the
demands for Grants for various ministries without debate after
2. The telecom department (DoT) will inform the Prime Minister’s
Office (PMO) that it is vital to link domestic manufacturing with
national security, as it attempts to address concerns that its new
policy that mandates a minimum 30% domestic sourcing of all
telecom and electronic products, would lead to distortions in the
3. The Overseas Citizens of India card holders, while travelling to
India, must carry the OCI booklet and their passport having ‘U’
visa sticker, the Indian Embassy has said.
4. Government today said Directorate of Enforcement (ED) is
investigating alleged violation of foreign exchange regulation by
cash and carry chain Bharti-Walmart.
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