Middle East

Comments invited on draft guidelines for procurement of wind power through bidding

With India presently having a wind power installed capacity of around 32GW, the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (“MNRE”) has invited comments on the draft guidelines for procurement of wind power through bidding. The draft guidelines have been formulated to promote competition and transparency through the process of bidding as required in terms of section 63 of the Electricity Act, 2003. The draft guidelines identifies the participants in the bidding process and outlines the pre-bid and post-bid activities and documentation to be fulfilled while undertaking the bidding process. A copy of the draft guidelines can be found here. Comments are requested by April 21, 2017.

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Amendments to Maternity Benefit Act 1961 comes into force

The following amendments to the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961, by virtue of the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act, 2017, have come into force with effect from April 1, 2017:

  • The maximum period for which a woman employee is entitled to payment of maternity benefit is now increased to 26 weeks (instead of the earlier 12 weeks). Further, not more than 8 weeks will precede the date of expected delivery (instead of the earlier 6 weeks). However, such extended benefit will only be given to a woman employee for her first two deliveries. A woman employee having two or more surviving children would be entitled to maternity benefit as per the earlier provisions, that is, a maximum period of 12 weeks of which not more than 6 weeks will precede the date of her expected delivery.
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Legal status of virtual currencies/cryptocurrencies in India

  1. INTRODUCTION. 

1.1.         Unlike the traditional form of currencies issued by government/banking authorities, virtual currencies (“VCs”) such as Bitcoin are a form of cryptocurrency/digital currency, ‘issued and usually controlled by its developers, and used and accepted among the members of a specific virtual community1, and which relies on cryptography for its creation and management.

1.2.         In this digital age, trading and transacting in VCs such as Bitcoins has reached an alarming proportion and the question of recognition and regulation of VCs is therefore a question that governments have been grappling with over the last few years. India is no different, and this newsletter is an attempt to provide a brief overview of the legal status of VCs in India. 

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Now register Trademark as ‘Well Known’​

In a significant development to improve India’s intellectual property regime, rules for registering trademarks have been simplified. This is a step in the right direction as it would boost the ease of doing business.

Now you can register trade mark as “Well Known” and Save potential litigation cost. The registration fee of Rs 1 lakh is insignificant if compared to the savings in potential litigation costs.

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Things you need to know about Employment and Business Visa in India

 

General Requirements

The Foreigner’s Act, 1946, The Registration of Foreigners Act, 1939 and The Citizenship Act, 1955, together with allied rules and periodic amendments regulate the foreigner’s entry, along with the immigration policy, movement and stay in India. Most foreign nationals entering India require a valid passport along with an appropriate visa depending on the motive of visit to India. Visa can be issued for the following purposes.

Business Visa: An individual seeking to travel to India on business should obtain a Business Visa. The validity of a business visa can range from 6 months to 10 years. Individuals who seek to establish a business in India may be eligible for a business visa, which is usually issued with a longer validity period (a long term visa). A business visa application should include supporting documents from the sponsoring organization(s).

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Bombay High Court – Rights of Successors to Prevail Over Those of Nominees of Shares

(Holding the view in the earlier Kokate Case as incorrect, the Division Bench of the Bombay High Court has clarified the position of law with respect to rights of nominees versus those of successors over shares of a company. The Court has held that nomination does not override the law in relation to testamentary or intestate succession, and vesting under Section 109A (of Companies Act, 1956) does not create a third mode of succession.)

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Post Amendment Challenge and Enforcement of Arbitral Awards – Clarification by the Delhi High Court

Un-amended (Indian) Arbitration Act would continue to apply to challenge and enforcement proceedings concerning awards delivered in arbitrations commenced prior to the amendment. The party challenging such an arbitral award is therefore entitled to an automatic stay on its enforcement without deposit of any money in the court, in keeping with the position prior to the amendment.

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Year End Round-Up: Renewable Energy

In furtherance of its commitment to clean energy, India has undertaken the largest renewable energy capacity expansion programme in the world through initiation of various schemes, programmes and policy measures during the last 2 years.

According to the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (“MNRE”), a capacity addition of 14.30 GW of renewable energy was reported during the last 2½ years under grid connected systems – 5.8 GW from solar, 7.04 GW from wind, 0.53 GW from (small) hydro and 0.93 GW from bio-power. A total of 7.52 GW of grid-connected power generation capacity from renewable energy sources has been added so far this year (January 2016 to October 2016) as stated below:

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LexCounsel Regulatory Update – October 17, 2016

MEDIATION AND CONCILIATION UNDER THE NEW COMPANIES ACT

I. Dispute Resolution under the Companies Act, 2013

The Companies Act, 2013 (“CA 2013”) attempts to modernise the way companies in India are owned and operated, in sync with the practices across the world. In the same spirit, the CA 2013 makes it possible for parties in a dispute before government administrators (such as Regional Director, Registrar of Companies, etc.) or the tribunals formed under the CA 2013, i.e. National Company Law Tribunal or the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal, to request for the dispute to be referred to mediation or conciliation. The process of mediation and conciliation is to be conducted before experts empanelled with the mediation and conciliation panel (“Panel”) under the CA 2013.

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The surrogacy debate in India

“The parents construct the child biologically, while the child constructs the parents socially.”

Law Commission of India, Report No. 228, August 2009

Surrogacy, understood universally, as also defined in the Indian National Guidelines for regulation of IVF clinics (“National Guidelines”), means:

“an arrangement in which a woman agrees to carry a pregnancy that is genetically  unrelated to her and her husband, with the intention to carry it to term and hand over the child to the genetic parents for whom she is acting as a surrogate”.

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