India Forms Company Law Committee To Improve Ease Of Doing Business
The skyline of Mumbai city is photographed. (Photographer: Abhijit Bhatlekar/ Bloomberg News)

India Forms Company Law Committee To Improve Ease Of Doing Business

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The government on Wednesday decided to set up an 11-member panel which will suggest measures to declog and improve the functioning of the NCLT and make recommendations on various issues pertaining to implementation of the Companies Act as well as the Limited Liability Partnership Act.

The panel -- Company Law Committee -- headed by Corporate Affairs Secretary Injeti Srinivas, would also suggest measures for removing any bottlenecks in the overall functioning of statutory bodies like the Serious Fraud Investigation Office, Investor Education and Protection Fund Authority and National Financial Reporting Authority.

The latest decision is in line with the government's objective of promoting ease of doing business for law abiding corporates, fostering improved corporate compliance for stakeholders at large and also to address emerging issues having impact on the working of companies in the country, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs said in a statement.

The committee would submit its recommendations in phases and subject-wise to the government from time to time as may be decided by the chairperson. It will have a tenure of one year from the date of its first meeting.

Apart from Srinivas, other members of the panel include Uday Kotak, Managing Director of Kotak Mahindra Bank; Ajay Bahl, Founder and Managing Partner at AZB & Partners, Advocates & Solicitors; Xpro India Chairman Sidharth Birla; Shardul S Shroff, Executive Chairman at Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co; and TK Viswanathan, ex- secretary general, Lok Sabha.

Among others, the panel would identify specific provisions under the Companies Act, 2013 and the Limited Liability Partnership Act, 2008 which are required to be amended to bring about greater ease of living for the corporate stakeholders.

The committee would examine the feasibility of introducing settlement mechanism, deferred prosecution agreement, among others, within the fold of the Companies Act.

Further, it would analyse the nature of the offences (compoundable and non- compoundable) and submit its recommendation as to whether any of the offences could be re-categorised as 'civil wrongs' along with measures to optimise the compliance requirements under the Companies Act.

Also, it would propose measures to further de-clog and improve the functioning of the National Company Law Tribunal.

The committee would "study the existing framework under the Limited Liability Partnership Act, 2008 and suggest measures to plug the gaps, if any, while at the same time enhancing the ease of doing business" and propose measures to further de-clog and improve the functioning of the NCLT.

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