Anti-Graft Bill giving right to punish bribe givers passed by Rajya Sabha

The Rajya Sabha on Thursday passed the Prevention of Corruption (Amendment) Bill, 2013 by a voice vote, that seeks to punish bribe givers for the first time with imprisonment of up to a maximum of seven years. In the House debate, Minister for Personnel and Public Grievances Dr. Jitendra Singh said, the legislation against the corruption has been made wide based. He said the Bill has been brought in the House after it was deliberated in the Standing Committee, Law Commission and finally after holding consultations in the Select Committee. The Bill introduces the offence of giving a bribe as a direct offence. However, a person who is compelled to give a bribe will not be charged with the offence if he reports the matter to law enforcement authorities within seven days. The Bill has many provisions to ensure speedy trial of corruption cases besides providing protection to bureaucrats, even after their retirement, from malicious complaints. Highlights of the Bill The Act covers the offence of giving a bribe to a public servant under abetment.  The Bill makes specific provisions related to giving a bribe to a public servant, and giving a bribe by a commercial organisation. The Bill redefines criminal misconduct to only cover misappropriation of property and possession of disproportionate assets.…
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Arms licence-holders to be given Unique Identification Number, to register with National Database of Arms Licence

G.S.R. 644(E).—In exercise of the powers conferred by Section 44 of the Arms Act, 1959 (54 of 1959), the Central Government hereby makes the following rules further to amend the Arms Rules, 2016, namely: 1.These rules may be called the Arms (Second Amendment) Rules, 2018. 2. In the Arms Rules, 2016,- (a) for sub-rule (2), the following sub-rule shall be substituted, namely: “(2) Every licensing authority and the renewing authority shall also enter such data in the NDAL system which shall generate a unique identification number (UIN) and with effect from the 1st day of April, 2019, any arms license without UIN shall be considered invalid.”; (b) for sub-rule (4), the following sub-rule shall be substituted, namely: “(4) Any existing licensee holding multiple licenses in Form III shall on or before the 1st day of April, 2019, make an application for grant of a single license in respect of all the firearms held by him under his UIN, to the concerned licensing authority: Provided  that  where  the  applicant  applying  a  license  for  restricted  category  of  arms  or ammunition specified in Schedule I is also a holder of a licence for permissible category of arms or ammunition specified in the said Schedule; or where the applicant, applying for permissible category of arms or ammunition is also a holder of a licence for restricted category or arms or ammunition specified in the said Schedule, the licensing authority concerned shall issue a new licence for such restricted or permissible category of arms or ammunition, as may be applicable, under the existing UIN of the licensee; Provided further that separate licence books shall be generated in case of each licence in Form II, Form  III  and  Form  IV  and  in  case  of  a licence  in  Form  III,  separately  for  restricted  and permissible categories of arms and ammunition specified in Schedule I, with an over all ceiling of three firearms under a single UIN”.…
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One more LoC regarding NRI matrimonial disputes issued

The Integrated Nodal Agency (INA), decided to issue one more Look-out-Circular (LoC). The Ministry has already issued 6 LoCs since April 2018, after examining the complaints received regarding NRI matrimonial disputes. The INA meets regularly to discuss issues related to NRI matrimonial disputes and chart the way forward. In criminal matters involving NRI’s, LoC could be issued by the INA in cognizable offences, when the overseas husband is deliberately evading arrest or not appearing in the trial court despite non-bailable warrants and other coercive measures or there is a likelihood that he will leave the country to evade trial or arrest. The LoC will be issued after having the case scrutinised by NCW. Ministry of Women and Child Development Tweet The post One more LoC regarding NRI matrimonial disputes issued appeared first on SCC Blog.…
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Commercial Courts (Pre-Institution Mediation and Settlement) Rules, 2018, notified [Highlights]

The Central Government on 03-07-2018 has, in exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (2) of Section 21A read with sub-section (1) of Section 12A of the Commercial Courts Act, 2015 (4 of 2016), notified the  Commercial Courts (Pre-Institution Mediation and Settlement) Rules, 2018. Key Highlights of the Rules are as follows :— Initiation of mediation process — (1) A party to a commercial dispute needs to make an application to the Authority as per Form-1 in Schedule-I, either online/by post/by hand, for initiating mediation process along with Rs 1000 as fees payable to the Authority by demand draft/ online; (2)The Authority shall, having regard to territorial and pecuniary jurisdiction and nature of commercial dispute, issue notice, as per Form-2 in Schedule-I through registered/speed post and electronic means, i.e., e-mail and like to the opposite party for appearing and giving consent to participate in mediation process on a date not beyond ten days from issue of notice. (3)If no response is received from opposite party either by post/e-mail, the Authority shall issue final notice as specified above. (4) Where notice under sub-rule (3) is unacknowledged or opposite party refuses to participate in mediation process, the Authority shall treat the process to be a non-starter and make report as per Form 3 in Schedule-I and endorse it to both the parties.…
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Directorate General of Safeguards renamed as Directorate General of Anti-profiteering

G.S.R (E).- In exercise of the powers conferred by Section 164 of the Central Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 (12 of 2017), the Central Government hereby makes the following rules further to amend the Central Goods and Services Tax Rules, 2017, namely: 1. (1)  These rules may be called the Central Goods and Services Tax (Seventh Amendment) Rules, 2018. (2) They shall be deemed to have come into force with effect from the 12th day of June, 2018. 2. In the Central Goods and Services Tax Rules, 2017, – (i) in Rule 125, for the words “Directorate General of Safeguards”, the words “Directorate General of Anti-profiteering” shall be substituted; (ii) in Rule 129, for the words “Director General of Safeguards”, wherever they occur, the words “Director General of Anti-profiteering” shall be substituted; (iii) in Rule 130, in sub-rule (2), for the words “Director General of Safeguards”, at both places where they occur, the words “Director General of Anti-profiteering” shall be substituted; (iv) in Rule 131, for the words “Director General of Safeguards”, the words “Director General of Anti-profiteering” shall be substituted; (v) in Rule 132, in sub-rule (1), for the words “Director General of Safeguards”, the words “Director General of Anti-profiteering” shall be substituted; vi) in Rule 133, for the words “Director General of Safeguards”, wherever they occur, the words “Director General of Anti-profiteering” shall be substituted.…
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Cabinet approves DNA Technology (Use and Application) Regulation Bill, 2018

The Union Cabinet has approved The DNA Technology (Use and Application) Regulation Bill, 2018. Details of the Bill:. The primary intended purpose for enactment of “The DNA Technology (Use and Application) Regulation Bill”  is for expanding the application of DNA-based forensic technologies to support and strengthen the justice delivery system of the country. The utility of DNA based technologies for solving crimes, and to identify missing persons, is well-recognized across the world. By providing for the mandatory accreditation and regulation of DNA laboratories, the Bill seeks to ensure that with the proposed expanded use of this technology in the country, there is also the assurance that the DNA test results are reliable and the data remain protected from misuse or abuse in terms of the privacy rights of our citizens. Speedier justice delivery. Increased conviction rate. Bill’s provisions will enable the cross-matching between persons who have been reported missing on the one hand and unidentified dead bodies found in various parts of the country on the other, and also for establishing the identity of victims in mass disasters. Background: Forensic DNA profiling is of proven value in solving cases involving offences that are categorized as affecting the human body (such as murder, rape, human trafficking, or grievous hurt), and those against property (including theft, burglary, and dacoity).…
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DDA issues notification for Enabling Planned Development of Privately Owned Lands in Delhi

The Delhi Development Authority (DDA) has issued a notification for enabling the planned development of privately owned lands in Delhi. The policy to enable planned development of privately owned lands in Delhi was approved by the Authority in its meeting held on 21-12-2017 and the same was circulated to all the ULBs and other government agencies.  Simultaneously, in order to operationalize the above policy, the formulation of “Regulations for Enabling the Planned Development of Privately Owned Lands” was taken up under Section 57 of Delhi Development Act, 1957. The regulations were approved by the Authority in its meeting held on 19-06-2018 and thereafter the same has been approved by the Central Government for issuance of Final Notification of the same by DDA under Section 57 of DD Act, 1957. The following are the salient features of the policy and regulations for Enabling the Planned Development of Privately Owned Lands: The policy will be applicable on the private land pockets which have been left over from the planned development, which could not be acquired, land pockets for which acquisition proceedings have been quashed by the courts, where acquisition lapsed as per Sub-Section 2, section 24 of new LAAR Act, 2013. This policy shall not be applicable on the areas falling in Zone O, covered under water bodies, land pockets falling under ridge, Regional Park, Reserved Forest Areas, Monument Regulated Zones, laldora / extended laldora, disputed lands and land parcels which are already eligible for land pooling.…
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IBBI (Insolvency Resolution Process for Corporate Persons) Regulations, 2016 amended

The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI) has notified on 04-07-2018, the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (Insolvency Resolution Process for Corporate Persons) (Third Amendment) Regulations, 2018. The following are salient amendments to the regulations: a. The regulations provide that wherever the corporate debtor has classes of creditors having at least ten creditors in the class, the interim resolution professional shall offer a choice of three insolvency professionals in the public announcement to act as the authorised representative of creditors in each class. A creditor in a class may indicate its choice of an insolvency professional, from amongst the three choices provided by the interim resolution professional, to act as its authorised representative. The insolvency professional, who is the choice of the highest number of creditors in the class, shall be appointed as the authorised representative of the creditors of the respective class. b. An application for withdrawal of an application admitted under Section 7, 9 or 10 of the Code (for closure of corporate insolvency resolution process) may be submitted to the interim resolution professional or the resolution professional, as the case may be, before issue of invitation for expression of interest, along with a bank guarantee towards estimated cost incurred for certain purposes under the process.…
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UGC (Online Courses) Regulations, 2018 , approved: A landmark reform in the field of higher education 

Higher Educational Institutions can now offer Certificate, Diploma and Degree Programmes in full-fledged online mode in line with their regular programs. In a landmark reform in the field of Higher Education, University Grants Commission has approved UGC (Online Courses) Regulations, 2018. Higher Educational Institutions can offer Certificate, Diploma and Degree Programmes in full-fledged online mode in only those disciplines in which it has already been offering the same or similar Programmes /Courses at graduation level in regular mode (of classroom teaching) or in Open and Distance Learning mode and from which at least one batch has been graduated and approved by the statutory councils, as applicable. Online Programmes requiring Practical/ Laboratory Courses as a curricular requirement shall not be permitted.  The Examinations shall be conducted in proctored mode and in conformity with any norms for such examinations stipulated by the commission. The online learning shall have minimum four quadrants: video lectures, e- content, self-assessment and discussion forum to clarify doubts. The Higher Educational Institutions will be eligible to offer Online Programmes if they have been in existence for at least five years and are accredited by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC) with a valid minimum score of 3.26 on a 4-point scale; and should be in the top-100 in overall category in the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) for at least two years in the previous three years.…
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Draft Act for setting up of Higher Education Commission of India by repealing UGC Act, approved

The Higher Education Commission of India (Repeal of University Grants Commission Act) Act, 2018 which seeks to repeal  UGC Act and provides for setting up of Higher Education Commission of India has been prepared by the Ministry of HRD and placed in public domain for comments and suggestions. The focus of Higher Education Commission of India will be on improving academic standards and the quality of Higher Education. Comments and suggestions on the draft Bill are called for from educationists, stakeholders and general public by 7th July 2018 till 5 p.m. The comments may be mailed to reformofugc@gmail.com. The draft Act is in accordance with the commitment of Government for reforming the regulatory systems that provide for more autonomy and facilitate holistic growth of the education system which provides greater opportunities to the Indian students at more affordable cost. The transformation of the regulatory set up is guided by the following principles: 1. Less Government and more Governance: Downsizing the scope of the Regulator. No more interference in the management issues of the educational institutions. 2.Separation of grant functions: The grant functions would be carried out by the HRD Ministry, and the HECI would focus only on academic matters. 3.End of Inspection Raj: Regulation is done through transparent public disclosures, merit-based decision making on matters regarding standards and quality in higher education.…
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FSSAI proposes life imprisonment, Rs 10 lakh fine for food adulteration

The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has issued the draft amendments to the Food Safety and Standards (FSS) Act, which was notified in 2011 as part of a more stern law that is being worked out to curb the pernicious practice of food adulteration. The regulator has proposed as many as 100 amendments to the Act and has sought comments from the public by July 2. Any person who “adds an adulterant to food so as to render it injurious for human consumption with an inherent potential to cause his death or is likely to cause grievous hurt, irrespective of the fact whether it causes actual injury or not, shall be punishable for a term which shall not be less than 7 years but which may extend to imprisonment for life and also fine which shall not be less than Rs 10 lakh,” the proposed amendment states. The new law is in line with the directions of the Supreme Court on the issue. It has also incorporated elements from the Singapore food safety law. The new Consumer Protection Bill, which is pending in Parliament, also proposes a similar quantum of stringent punishment for adulteration. It has also proposed increase in the punishment to imprisonment of not less than 6 months and up to two years, besides penalty of up to Rs 5 lakh for obstructing, impersonating, intimidating and threatening or assaulting a food safety officer in order to enforce the law at the ground level.…
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The Intellectual Property Rights (Imported Goods) Enforcement Amendment Rules, 2018 notified

G.S.R. 581 (E).—In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) of Section 156 of the Customs Act, 1962 (52 of 1962), read with clauses (n) and (u) of sub-section (2) of Section 11 of the said Act, the Central Government, being satisfied that it is necessary in the public interest so to do, hereby makes the following rules to amend the Intellectual Property Rights (Imported Goods) Enforcement Rules, 2007, notified by the Government of India in the Ministry of Finance (Department of Revenue), Notification No. 47/2007-CUSTOMS (N.T.), dated the 8th May, 2007, published in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary, Part II, Section 3, sub-section (i), vide number G.S.R. 331 (E), dated the 8th May, 2007, except as respects things done or omitted to be done before such amendment, namely: 1 (i) These rules may be called the Intellectual Property Rights (Imported Goods) Enforcement Amendment Rules, 2018. (ii) They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette. 2. In the said rules, (A) in Rule 2, – (i) in clause (b), the words and figures “patent as defined in the Patents Act, 1970,” shall be omitted; (ii) in clause (c), the words and figures “the Patents Act, 1970,” shall be omitted; (B) in Rule 5, after condition (b), the following conditions shall be inserted, namely: “(c) the right holder or his authorised representative shall inform the Commissioner of Customs at the time of giving notice about any amendment, cancellation, suspension, or revocation of the Intellectual Property Right by the authorities under the Intellectual Property Laws or any Court of Law or Appellate Board, subsequent to its registration with the authorities under the Intellectual Property Law and in case of any such amendment, cancellation, suspension or revocation of the Intellectual Property Right during the validity of the notice registered under Rule 4, the same shall be brought to the notice of the Commissioner of Customs by the right holder within a period of one month of the date of communication of any such amendment, cancellation, suspension or revocation of the Intellectual Property Right to the right holder or any person authorised by him in this regard; (d) in the event of any amendment, cancellation, suspension or revocation of the Intellectual Property Right by the authorities under the Intellectual Property Law or by any Court of Law or Appellate Board, the Commissioner of Customs may accordingly amend, suspend or cancel the notice and the corresponding protection.”.…
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