By way of a May 2017 order, the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India set up the Reinsurance Expert Committee to make recommendations for, among other things, the efficient implementation and operation of the order of preference for cessions specified under the Branch Office Regulations. The committee recently released its report, providing its analysis and recommendations on the terms of reference prescribed under the order.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) recently dismissed claims against Sanofi India Limited for alleged abuse of its dominant position in the market of drugs and pharmaceutical products. The CCI found that Sanofi enjoyed no dominant position and therefore held that there was no prima facie case to investigate its alleged conduct.
The Competition Commission of India recently dismissed allegations of anti-competitive conduct against the producers and presenters of the film Kahaani-2, as well as two digital cinema service providers (DCSP). The plaintiff claimed that the defendants had entered into an anti-competitive agreement to control the release of Kahaani-2 and deny other DCSPs operating in the market access to the film.
The draft Financial Resolution and Deposit Insurance Bill 2017 has recently attracted significant attention. This is mainly due to the objections raised by the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI), among other parties. Although the exact nature of the IRDAI's objections to the bill are unclear, a balance may need to be struck between the powers of the existing sectoral regulators and the proposed Resolution Corporation.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) recently imposed a penalty of Rs870 million on Hyundai Motor India Limited on the grounds that the company's dealership agreement had maintained resale prices through discount control and penalty mechanisms. Further, the CCI held that Hyundai had tied the sale of its cars to the sale of specific lubricants and oils, restricting competition in the relevant market and constituting a tie-in arrangement under the Competition Act.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) recently approved the amalgamation of telecoms service operators Bharti Airtel and Telenor through a court-driven merger scheme. The CCI held that Airtel was unlikely to have the ability or incentive to restrict supply services in the relevant markets for retail mobile telephony and national and international long-distance services. As the merger was unlikely to raise competition concerns, it was approved under Section 31(1) of the Competition Act.
The Payment of Gratuity Act 1972 is a form of social security legislation which prescribes a scheme for the payment of gratuity. For the private sector, gratuity is capped at Rs1 million, whereas central government employees can receive gratuity of up to Rs2 million. There is a proposal to increase the cap for the private sector in order to align it with the central government. Although this is a step forward in ensuring better benefits to eligible employees, it will increase employers' financial burden.
The Supreme Court recently set out the legal position regarding challenges to a person's possible appointment as an arbitrator. It held that since ineligibility goes to the root of the appointment, the Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996 clarifies that if the arbitrator falls under any of the categories specified in the Seventh Schedule, he or she becomes ineligible to act as an arbitrator. However, if the circumstances fall under the Fifth Schedule, the person would not be de jure ineligible.
The Competition Commission of India recently initiated an investigation into the Ghaziabad Development Authority (GDA) for abuse of its dominant position in the market for the development and sale of low-cost residential flats under affordable housing schemes in lower economic areas in Ghaziabad. The CCI held that the GDA's conduct in increasing the price of flats was unfair on buyers and violated the Competition Act. It therefore instructed the director general to conduct an investigation into the GDA.
As the Indian insurance market develops and matures further, Indian insurers and insurance intermediaries will aim to introduce public issues and list on recognised stock exchanges in order to raise more funds from the public and provide liquidity to their existing shareholders. Companies looking to be initial public offering ready should focus on ensuring optimum regulatory compliance and rectifying any identified compliance issues, which will go a long way in simplifying the process of listing.
The Competition Commission of India recently initiated an investigation into the Delhi Development Authority (DDA) for alleged abuse of its dominant position in relation to the delayed allotment of residential flats to the middle income group under the Rohini Residential Plot Scheme 1981. The order marks the commission's third investigation into the DDA for alleged abuse of its dominant position in the market for residential flats in Delhi.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) recently imposed a Rs2.5 million penalty on Schulke & Mayr GmBH for failure to give notice of its global acquisition of the advanced sterilisation products division of Ethicon Inc – a wholly owned subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson. The CCI held that Schulke should have filed notice within 30 days of executing the global asset purchase agreement and not the country transfer agreement, as argued by Schulke.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) recently approved its first leniency application and granted a 75% reduction of the fine imposed on the leniency applicant. The CCI noted that the applicant was the first and only party to admit to the existence of a cartel and the bid-rigging activities. In granting the reduction, the CCI has demonstrated that it is extending its leniency programme to include officials and those in charge of companies under investigation.
The Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India recently notified the Motor Insurance Service Providers Guidelines to identify and regulate the role of automobile dealers in distributing and servicing motor insurance products. This move to recognise the role of automobile dealers gives legitimacy to existing practices of solicitation and servicing of motor insurance.
The Competition Commission of India recently imposed a penalty of Rs2.05 billion on seven cement manufacturers for bid rigging in the supply of cement to the Haryana Directorate of Supplies and Disposals. It found that the defendants had violated the Competition Act by quoting bidding prices and total quantities that were significantly higher than the corresponding increase in the wholesale price index and the total quantity of the previous year's tender, respectively.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) recently penalised the Association of Malayalam Movie Artists and the Film Employees Federation of Kerala for boycotting a competitor in violation of the Competition Act. The CCI held that the parties had not only imposed a ban on the complainant, but had also influenced actors and technicians who worked or commenced work with him.
The federal government recently enacted a new act in order to empower disabled individuals and ensure their inclusion in the education and employment spheres. Although the government is primarily responsible for ensuring that disabled individuals receive equal treatment under the act, private organisations have also been made accountable for various obligations.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) recently initiated an investigation into the Haryana Public Works Department for the alleged abuse of its dominant position in relation to a tender document for the construction of a railway bridge. The CCI found that various clauses of the tender document were unfair and discriminatory and therefore violated Section 4 of the Competition Act.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) recently imposed a penalty of Rs500,000 on two investors for violation of the Competition Act after they failed to file notice of their acquisition of equity shares in a pharmaceutical company. The CCI held that since the investors had entered into a shareholder agreement entitling them to certain affirmative rights, the acquisition could not be treated solely as an investment and therefore was not exempted under CCI regulations.
The Reserve Bank of India recently directed several banks to start insolvency resolution proceedings against a list of identified companies, including Jaypee Infratech Limited, a leading real estate development company. The case has highlighted the need for the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code 2016 to recognise a wider class of creditors that can initiate an insolvency proceeding and participate meaningfully in such process. It has also emphasised the important role that financial creditors play.