Tag Archives: India

ILN Today Post

LEGAL AND REGULATORY FRAMEWORK FOR DIGITAL HEALTH – TELEMEDICINE PRACTICE GUIDELINES

In a significant move, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (“MoHFW”) on March 25, 2020 has issued the Telemedicine Practice Guidelines (“Guidelines”) for enabling Registered Medical Practitioners (“RMPs”) to provide healthcare using telemedicine. As per the Guidelines, ‘telemedicine’ is the delivery of health care services, where distance is a critical factor, by all the healthcare professionals using information and communication technologies for the exchange of valid information for diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease and injuries, research and evaluation, all in the interests of advancing the health of individuals and their communities.

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Update on Measures Taken by Government Departments in view of Covid-19 Pandemic

Restriction on Collection of Fees by Schools in Uttarakhand:

Uttarakhand Education Department has released a circular on March 25, 2020 restricting all CBSE, ICSE and other boards affiliated aided and un-aided schools within Uttarakhand from collection of fees till re-opening of the schools. All schools within Uttarakhand have been directed not to force the parents for immediate deposit of the fees in view of the ongoing lockdown on account of the Covid-19 pandemic. The fees shall be collected only upon re-opening of the schools.

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Corporate Governance Reliefs announced in view of COVID-19

The Union Finance & Corporate Affairs Minister, Government of India, Ms. Niramla Sitharaman, in her interactions with the press yesterday, i.e., on March 24, 2020, has announced multiple relaxations to statutory and regulatory compliances under various legislations viz., the Companies Act, 2013 (“CA2013”), Limited Liability Partnership Act, 2008 (“LLP Act”), Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (“IBC”), Income Tax Act, 1961, the Goods and Services Tax legislations, Customs Act, 1962 etc. The complete press release vis-à-vis all measures announced can be accessed at http://pib.nic.in/newsite/PrintRelease.aspx?relid=200639.

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Highlights of Finance Minister’s Press Conference: Reliefs during COVID-19 outbreak

In the midst of the shutdown of businesses all over India to contain the spread of the highly contagious Covid-19 infection, Finance Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman today addressed a press conference on various statutory and regulatory compliance issues and announced a slew of measures for providing relief amid the pandemic outbreak.

The brief highlights of the announcements made by the Finance Minister:

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Time to Protect Indian Businesses from Insolvency

The medium to long term financial effects of Coronavirus are yet to unfold, but the magnitude is already anticipated to be huge. Many countries across the world are announcing financial packages for businesses. India is also on the track to take a decision on relief packages.

With widespread lockdowns, the coming months are expected to witness a series of defaults by many viable businesses, and in this situation, we need to protect viable Indian businesses from landing up in our bankruptcy tribunals, for no fault of their promoters.

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Initiative by Ministry of Corporate Affairs to contain the spread of COVID-19

As a part of Government of India’s initiative to ensure active preparation to face the challenge and threat posed by the growing pandemic of COVID-19, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) has relaxed the rules with respect to meetings of board of directors and dispensed with the necessity of holding physical meetings on matters relating to approval of financial statements, board report, restructuring etc. up to 30th June 2020. Therefore, till 30th June 2020 the companies can convene meeting through video conferencing for approval of financial statement, board report etc. The MCA is further examining any other relaxations under the Companies Act, 2013, that may be necessitated on account of COVID-19.
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FORCE MAJEURE AND CORONAVIRUS: FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Part 1: Force Majeure and Suspension/Termination of Contracts

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is turning out to be a twin fold pandemic – that started with affecting public health and soon spread throughout the economy. Sudden global shutdown and travel restrictions have brought the economy to a screeching halt, before most of us could even comprehend the real impact. Many businesses are still at a loss and are only doing a guesswork regarding the magnitude of potential losses and recalibration needed for the businesses to survive this time, and remain viable.

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Companies Amendment Bill 2020 introduced in Lok Sabha

On 17th March 2020, the Government has introduced the Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (“Bill”) in the Lok Sabha to further amend Companies Act, 2013 (“Act”) proposing various changes pertaining to removing criminality from most of the offences under the Act and offering simpler penalty regime for businesses as well as paving way for direct overseas listing of Indian companies.

The key amendments introduced in the Bill, inter alia, are listed below:

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LIQUIDATED DAMAGES CANNOT TRIGGER INSOLVENCY PROCEEDINGS

JudgmentGujarat Urja Vikas Nigam Limited vs Nitash Co-generation Private Limited

Forum: National Company Law Tribunal, Mumbai Bench (“NCLT”).

Act/Law: The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (“Code”).

Ratio: Claim for “Liquidated Damages” cannot trigger insolvency proceedings, unless adjudicated upon by a court of law. Proceedings under the Code are not for ascertaining or crystallizing the quantum of damages.

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Process for Winding-Up under the Companies Act Revised; Summary Procedure Extended to More Companies

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Government of India vide its Notification dated January 24, 2020, has notified the Companies (Winding Up) Rules, 2020 (“Rules”). These Rules are set to take effect from April 1, 2020 and lay down the procedure for winding up on grounds other than inability to pay debts prescribed under Section 271 of the Companies Act, 2013 (“CA2013”). It is pertinent to mention here that the proceedings pertaining to voluntary winding up and winding up on the grounds of inability to pay debts fall within the ambit of Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code 2016 (“IBC”) since its enforcement.

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