Amendments to existing lawsLegislation Updates

All ministries/ departments/ offices are requested to bring the below-mentioned amendments to the notice of all administrative authorities under their control.

Amendment in Central Civil Services (Conduct) Rules, 1964

Before Amendment

After Amendment
Sub-rule (3) of Rule 13

 

In any other case, a Government servant shall not accept any gift without the sanction of the government, if the value exceeds-

 

i.            Rupees one thousand five hundred in the case of government servants holding any Group ‘A’ or Group ‘B’ post; and

ii.            Rupees five hundred in the case of government servant holding any Group ‘C’ or Group ‘D’ posts.

Sub-rule (3) of Rule 13

 

In any other case, a Government servant shall not accept any gift without the sanction of the government, if the value exceeds-

 

i.            Rupees five thousand in the case of government servants holding any Group ‘A’ or Group ‘B’ post; and

ii.            Rupees two hundred in the case of government servant holding any Group ‘C’ or Group ‘D’ posts

Sub-rule (4) of Rule 13

 

Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-rule(2) and (3), a Government servant, being a member of India delegation or otherwise, may receive and retain gifts from foreign dignitaries, if the market value of gifts received on one occasion does not exceed rupees one thousand. In all other cases, the acceptance and retention of such gift shall be regulated by the instructions issued by the government in this regard from time to time.

 

Sub-rule (4) of Rule 13

Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-rule(2) and (3), a Government servant, being a member of India delegation or otherwise, may receive and retain gifts from foreign dignitaries in accordance with the provisions of The Foreign Contribution (Acceptance or Retention of Gifts or Presentation) Rules, 2012, as amended from time to time.


Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pension

[Dated: 06-08-2019]

Legislation UpdatesRules & Regulations

G.S.R. 360(E)—In exercise of the powers conferred by Sections 6, 8 and 25 of the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 (29 of 1986) read with sub-rule (4) of Rule 5 of the Environment (Protection) Rules, 1986, the Central Government, after having dispensed with the requirement of notice under clause (a) of sub-rule (3) of Rule 5 of the said rule in public interest, hereby makes the following rules further to amend the Bio-Medical Waste Management Rules, 2016, namely:—

1. (1) These rules may be called the Bio-Medical Waste Management (Second Amendment) Rules, 2019.

    (2) They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.

2. In the Bio-Medical Waste Management Rules, 2016 (hereinafter referred to as the said rules), in Rule 4, in clause (d), the following Explanation shall be inserted, namely:-

“Explanation.- For removal of doubts, it is hereby clarified that the expression “Chlorinated plastic bags” shall not include urine bags, effluent bags, abdominal bags and chest drainage bags.”.

3. In Schedule III to the said rules, against serial number 3, in column (3), in item (viii), for the brackets and letters
“(viii)”, the brackets and letters “(vii)” shall be substituted.


[Notification dt. 10-05-2019]

Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change

Legislation UpdatesRules & Regulations

No. SEBI/LAD-NRO/GN/2019/14.—In exercise of the powers conferred by Section 30 of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 (15 of 1992), the Securities and Exchange Board of India hereby, makes the following regulations to further amend the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Debenture Trustees) Regulations, 1993, namely,–

1. These regulations may be called the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Debenture Trustees) (Amendment) Regulations, 2019.

2. They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.

3. In the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Debenture Trustees) Regulations, 1993, –
(1) in Regulation 7A,-
(i) after the words “net worth of” and before the words “crore rupees”, the word “two” shall be substituted with the
word “ten”;

(ii) following proviso shall be inserted, namely:-

 “Provided that a debenture trustee holding certificate of registration as on the date of commencement of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Debenture Trustees) (Amendment) Regulations, 2019 shall fulfil the net worth requirements within three years from the date of such commencement.”

(2) in Regulation 15, in sub-regulation (2), after clause (b), following provisos shall be inserted, –

“Provided that a debenture trustee may seek the consent of debenture holders through e-voting, wherever applicable;

Provided further that the requirement to convene a meeting of all debenture holders in case of a default in payment obligation by the issuer, shall not be applicable in case of debentures issued by way of public issue.”


[Notification dt. 07-05-2019]

Securities Exchange Board of India

Legislation UpdatesRules & Regulations

G.S.R. 210(E)— In exercise of the powers conferred by clause (da) and clause (f) of sub-section (2) of Section 29 of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992, (15 of 1992), the Central Government hereby makes the following rules further to amend the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Procedure for Holding Inquiry and Imposing Penalties by Adjudicating Officer) Rules, 1995, namely:-

1. Short title and commencement— (1) These rules may be called the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Procedure for Holding Inquiry and Imposing Penalties by Adjudicating Officer) Amendment Rules, 2019.

                   (2) They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.

2. In the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Procedure for Holding Inquiry and Imposing Penalties by Adjudicating Officer) Rules, 1995 (hereinafter referred to as “the said rules”), in the opening para, for the words, brackets, figures and letter “clause (da) of sub-section (2) of Section 29”, the words, brackets, figures and letter “clause (da) and clause (f) of sub-section (2) of Section 29” shall be substituted.

3. In the said Rules, in Rule 1, in sub-rule (1), the words “by Adjudicating Officer” shall be omitted.

4. In the said rules, in Rule 2, in clause (c), for the word, figures and letter “Section 15-I”, the words, brackets, figures and letters “sub-section (4A) of Section 11 or sub-section (2) of Section 11B or Section 15-I of the Act” shall be substituted.

5. In the said Rules, in Rule 4, –

(i) in sub-rule (1), after figures and letter “15E,” at both the places where it occurs, the figures and letters “15EA, 15EB,” shall be inserted;

(ii) for the words “adjudicating officer”, wherever they occur, the words “the Board or the adjudicating officer” shall be substituted.

6. In the said Rules, in Rule 5, –

(i) for the words “adjudicating officer”, wherever they occur, the words “the Board or the adjudicating officer” shall be substituted;

(ii) for the word and figures “Section 15-I”, wherever they occur, the words, brackets, figures and letters, “sub-section (4A) of Section 11 or sub-section (2) of Section 11B or Section 15-I of the Act” shall be substituted.

(iii) after sub-rule (4), the following sub-rule shall be inserted, namely:-

“(5) The Board or the adjudicating officer who has passed an order, may rectify any error apparent on the face of record on such order, either on its own motion or where such error is brought to his notice by the affected person within a period of fifteen days from the date of such order.”

Explanation: For the purpose of this rule, “error apparent on the face of record” shall mean any typographical errors that creep in inadvertently into the order and includes such other errors that do not require a long drawn out reasoning process to ascertain such a mistake.”

7. In the said rules, in Rule 6, for the words “adjudicating officer”, the words “the Board or the adjudicating officer” shall be substituted.

[F. No. 5/05/FM/2017]

Ministry of Finance

Legislation UpdatesRules & Regulations

G.S.R.209(E)—Whereas a draft of certain rules to amend the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Rules, 2017 was published as required by sub-sections (1) and (2) of section 100 of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 (49 of 2016) in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary, Part-II, Section 3, Sub-section (i) vide number G.S.R. 1053(E), dated the 22nd October, 2018 inviting objections and suggestions from all persons likely to be affected thereby, before the expiry of thirty days from the day on which the copies of the Official Gazette containing the said notification was made available to the public;

And whereas the copies of the Official Gazette in which the said notification was published were made available to the public on the 23rd October, 2018;

And whereas the objections and suggestions received from the public were considered by the Central Government;

Now, therefore, in exercise of powers conferred by sub-sections (1) and (2) of Section 100 of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 (49 of 2016), the Central Government hereby makes the following rules, to amend the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Rules, 2017, namely:-

1. Short title and extent- (1) These rules may be called the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Amendment) Rules, 2019.
                              (2) They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.

2. In the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Rules, 2017, after Chapter V, the following Chapter shall be inserted, namely:-

“CHAPTER VA

14A. (1) The State Governments or Union Territory Administrations shall notify the authority to whom a person with benchmark disability can apply for the high support requirement as per sub-section (1) of Section 38 of the Act.

(2) Only the persons with benchmark disabilities having permanent certificate of disability shall be eligible for applying for high support requirement.

(3) The State Governments shall constitute Assessment Board at the District level or Division level based on the number of persons with benchmark disabilities comprising the following:-

(a) District Chief Medical Officer or Civil Surgeon or Medical Superintendent…………………………….Chairperson;

(b) District Social Welfare Officer……………………Member;

(c) Five rehabilitation specialists [Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation or Orthopaedic specialist, ENT specialist, Ophthalmologist, General Physician (if the applicant is 18 years or above) or Pediatrician (if the applicant is less than 18 years), Psychiatrist]…………Members;

(d) Occupational therapist or speech therapist or Clinical Psychologist or Physiotherapist (as per requirement)…………… Member;

(e) Any other expert as the Chairperson deems appropriate……….Member.

(4) The authority notified under sub-rule (1) shall refer every case to the Assessment Board for assessment of applicant’s high support requirement.

(5) The Assessment Board shall invite the applicant of high support requirements for assessment and may, if necessary, seek clinical assessment.


Please Refer the link for detailed notification: NOTIFICATION

[ F. No. 16-16/2017-DD-III]

Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment


Image Credits: mygov.in

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: The Bench of Abhay Manohar Sapre and Indu Malhotra, JJ has held that pendency of any writ petition by itself does not affect the constitutionality of a Statute. It said:

“It is only when the Court declares a Statute as being ultra vires the provisions of the Constitution then the question may arise to consider its effect on the rights of the parties and that would always depend upon the declaration rendered by the Court and the directions given in that case.”

Background of the case:

“Keeping in view the amendment made in the definition of Section 2(e), which as stated above was not brought to the notice of the Bench, this issue was not considered though had relevance for   deciding the question involved in the appeal. It is for this reason, we prima facie find error in the judgment and, therefore, are inclined to stay the operation of our judgment.”

What Court said in Ahmadabad Pvt. Primary Teachers Association verdict:

“The legislature was alive to various kinds of definitions of the word “employee” contained in various previous labour enactments when the Act was passed in 1972. If it intended to cover in the definition of “employee” all kinds of employees, it could have as well used such wide language as is contained in Section 2(f) of the Employees’ Provident Funds Act, 1952 which defines “employee” to mean “any person who is employed for wages in any kind of work, manual or otherwise, in or in connection with the work of an establishment …”. Non-use of such wide language in the definition of “employee” in Section 2(e) of the Act of 1972 reinforces our conclusion that teachers are clearly not covered in the definition.”

Ruling:

Hence, after noticing that though the definition was amended in 2009 by Act No.47 of 2009, yet the same was given retrospective effect from 03.04.1997 so as to bring the amended definition on Statute Book, from 03.04.1997, the Court held that the effect of the amendment made in the Payment of Gratuity Act vide Amending Act No. 47 of 2009 on 31.12.2009 was two­fold.

  • the law laid down by this Court in the case of Ahmadabad Pvt. Primary Teachers Association was no longer applicable against the teachers, as if not rendered, and
  • the teachers were held entitled to claim the amount of gratuity under the Payment of Gratuity Act from their employer with effect from 03.04.1997.

When the counsel for the Institution argued that the constitutional validity of Amending Act No. 47 of 2009 was under challenge in this Court in a writ petition, which is pending, the Court rejected the argument and said that pendency of any writ petition by itself does not affect the constitutionality of a Statute.

[Birla Institute of Technology v. State of Jharkhand, 2019 SCC OnLine SC 340, decided on 07.03..2019]

Cabinet DecisionsLegislation Updates

The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved promulgation of an Ordinance to amend the definition of “person”, as defined in sub-section (v) of Section 2 of the Special Economic Zones Act, 2005 (28 of2005) to include a trust, to enable the setting up of a unit in a Special Economic Zone by a trust, as also to provide flexibility to the Central Government to include in this definition of a person, any entity that the Central Government may notify from time to time.

Impact:

The present provision of the SEZs Act, 2005 do not permit ‘trusts’ to set up units in SEZs. The amendment will enable a trust to be considered for grant of permission to set up a unit in SEZs. The amendment will also provide flexibility to the Central Government to include in this definition of a person, any entity that the Central Government may notify from time to time. This will facilitate investments in Special Economic Zones.

[Press Release dt. 28-02-2019]

Cabinet

Legislation UpdatesRules & Regulations

G.S.R. 160(E)—In exercise of the powers conferred by Section 9 and clause (e) of sub-section (2) of Section 47 of the Foreign Exchange Management Act, 1999 (42 of 1999), the Reserve Bank of India makes the following amendments to the Foreign Exchange Management (Foreign Currency Accounts by a person resident in India) Regulations, 2015 [Notification No. FEMA 10(R)/2015-RB dated January 21, 2016], namely:—

1. Short Title and Commencement:—
(i) These regulations may be called the Foreign Exchange Management (Foreign Currency Accounts by a person resident in India) (Amendment) Regulations, 2019.
(ii) They shall come into force from the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.

2. Amendment to Regulation 4:
In Regulation 4, the existing sub-regulation (G)(2), shall be substituted as follows:—
“(2) An authorized dealer in India may, subject to the directions as may be issued by the Reserve Bank, allow ship-manning / crew managing agencies in India and re-insurance and composite insurance brokers registered with IRDA to open and maintain non-interest bearing foreign currency accounts in India for the purpose of undertaking transactions in the ordinary course of their business.”

[No. FEMA 10(R)(2)/2019-RB]

[Notification dt. 27-02-2019]

Reserve Bank of India

Amendments to existing lawsLegislation Updates

S.O. 955(E)—The Hon’ble NGT, Principal Bench, New Delhi by its Order dated 13.08.2018 in Original Application No. 489/2014 has directed the Ministry to regulate the wood-based charcoal industries also by amending the Wood-Based Industries (Establishment and Regulation) Guidelines, 2016. In compliance with the orders of the Hon’ble NGT, the Guidelines are amended as under in order to regulate wood-based charcoal industries also:

1. The entry under Para 2(i) (h) of the Guidelines is substituted with the following: ‘Wood-Based Industry’ means any industry which processes wood as its raw material (Saw mills/veneer/plywood or any other form such as sandal, Katha wood, charcoal etc.).

2. The following entry is inserted after Para 2(i) (h):

(i) ‘Charcoal’ means a form of carbon derived from incomplete combustion of wood derived from a tree.

3. The following entry is inserted after Para 8 (iii):-

(iv) All wood-based industries will follow all environmental and other regulations prescribed by the State Pollution Control Board, Central Pollution Control Board and Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change as applicable to these industries under the Environment (Protection) Act, 1986 and other Central and State Acts.

[Dated: 22-02-2019]

Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change

Legislation UpdatesStatutes/Bills/Ordinances

The Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Second Ordinance, 2019 has been promulgated to give continued effect to the work already done by the Board of Governors (BOG) as per the provisions of earlier Ordinance. This Ordinance, inter alia, enables the Board of Governors appointed in supersession of the Medical Council of India (MCI) to continue to exercise the powers of MCI for a period of two years or till the Council is reconstituted, whichever is earlier so as to ensure transparency, accountability and quality in the governance of medical education in the country.

  • The Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019 was promulgated on January 12, 2019. It repeals and replaces the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Ordinance, 2018 promulgated on September 26, 2018.  The Ordinance amends the Indian Medical Council Act, 1956 which sets up the Medical Council of India (MCI) which regulates medical education and practice.  Note that the Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Bill 2018 (to replace the 2018 Ordinance) was passed by Lok Sabha on December 31, 2018, and is currently pending in Rajya Sabha.
  • Supersession of the MCI: The 1956 Act provides for supersession of the MCI and its reconstitution within a period of three years. The Ordinance amends this provision to provide for the supersession of the MCI for a period of one year.  In the interim period, the central government will constitute a Board of Governors, which will exercise the powers of the MCI.
  • The Act provides for the Board of Governors to consist of up to seven members including persons of eminence in medical education, appointed by the central government. The Ordinance amends this provision to increase the strength of the Board from seven members to 12 members. Further, it allows for persons with proven administrative capacity an experience to be selected in the Board.  The Ordinance provides for the Board of Governors to be assisted by a Secretary-General appointed by the central government.

[Source: PIB & PRS]

Ministry of Law and Justice

Amendments to existing lawsLegislation Updates

An Act further to amend the Divorce Act, 1869, the Dissolution of Muslim Marriages Act, 1939, the Special Marriage Act, 1954, the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955 and the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act, 1956.

BE it enacted by Parliament in the Seventieth Year of the Republic of India as follows:—

CHAPTER I
PRELIMINARY

1. (1) This Act may be called the Personal Laws (Amendment) Act, 2019.
(2) It shall come into force on such date as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint.

CHAPTER II
AMENDMENT TO THE DIVORCE ACT, 1869

2. In the Divorce Act, 1869, in Section 10, in sub-section (1), clause (iv) shall be omitted.

CHAPTER III
AMENDMENT TO THE DISSOLUTION OF MUSLIM MARRIAGES ACT, 1939

3. In the Dissolution of Muslim Marriages Act, 1939, in Section 2, in ground (vi), the words “leprosy or” shall be omitted.

CHAPTER IV
AMENDMENT TO THE SPECIAL MARRIAGE ACT, 1954

4. In the Special Marriage Act, 1954, in Section 27, in sub-section (1), clause (g) shall be omitted.

CHAPTER V
AMENDMENT TO THE HINDU MARRIAGE ACT, 1955

5. In the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, in Section 13, in sub-section (1), clause (iv) shall be omitted.

CHAPTER VI
AMENDMENT TO THE HINDU ADOPTIONS AND MAINTENANCE ACT, 1956

6. In the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act, 1956 in Section 18, in sub-section (2), clause (c) shall be omitted.

[Dated: 21-02-2019]

Ministry of Law and Justice

Legislation UpdatesRules & Regulations

G.S.R. 108(E)— In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1), read with clauses (i), (j), (jj), (jjj) and (k) of sub-section (2) of Section 73 of the Prevention of Money-laundering Act, 2002 (15 of 2003), the Central Government hereby makes the following rules further to amend the Prevention of Money- laundering (Maintenance of Records) Rules, 2005, namely:—

1. (1) These rules may be called the Prevention of Money-laundering (Maintenance of Records) Amendment Rules, 2019.

(2) They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.

2. In the Prevention of Money-laundering (Maintenance of Records) Rules, 2005 (hereinafter referred to as the said rules), in rule 2, in sub-rule (1),-

  1. (i)  for clause (aaa), the following clause shall be substituted, namely:-‘(aaa) “Aadhaar number” shall have the meaning assigned to it in clause (a) of Section 2 of the Aadhaar (Targeted Delivery of Financial and Other Subsidies, Benefits and Services) Act, 2016 (18 of 2016);’
  2. (ii)  clauses (aac) and (aad) shall be omitted;
  3. (iii)  in clause (d),

    1. (a)  after the words “driving licence,”, the words “proof of possession of Aadhaar number” shall be inserted;
    2. (b)  after the third proviso, the following proviso shall be inserted, namely:-“Provided also that where the client submits his proof of possession of Aadhaar number as an officially valid document, he may submit it in such form as are issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India;”Please refer the link for detailed notification: NOTIFICATION

Ministry of Finance

[F. No. P.12011/24/2017-ES Cell-DoR]

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: Rule 24(i-eeee) of the Haryana Liquor License Rules 1970 that provides for a single L-1BF license for the entire State to deal in imported foreign liquor, bottled outside India and imported into the country in a bottled, has been struck down by a 2:1 majority verdict by the 3-judge bench of Ranjan Gogoi, CJ, Navin Sinha and KM Joseph, JJ.

It was argued before the Court that the creation of a monopoly by the State in favour of a private entity, to trade in liquor, is contrary to Article 19(6) of the Constitution of India. Also, the single monopolistic L-1BF license was discriminatory and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution in so far as no such requirement was stipulated for wholesale trade in Indian made foreign liquor or country liquor in the State. There was no rational or reasonable classification for this distinction between licensees, having any rationale or nexus with any object to be achieved.

The State on the other hand argued that the aim and object of the amendment was to increase revenue, curb pilferage, control illicit trade in the State of Indian made foreign liquor and bottled in original bottled foreign liquor. The Financial Commissioner was competent under Section 59(a) read with Section 13 to amend Rule 24 by incorporation of Rule 24 (i-eeee) providing for a single L-1BF license for the entire State, as the competence of the State for issuance of license under Section 58(2)(e) was limited to a local area only.

Majority verdict by Sinha, J for himself and CJ Gogoi:

Sinha, J, writing down the majority verdict for himself and CJ Gogoi, held that the Financial Commissioner was not competent to amend the Rules under Section 59 of the Punjab Excise Act, 1914 with regard to grant of number of licences for the entire state, and which power was exclusive to the State Government under Section 6 read with Section 13(a) and 58(2)(e) of the Act as the nature of powers conferred on the Financial Commissioner under Section 59 of the Act, make it manifest that it is but a regulatory power available only after a license is granted to the licensee for a local area, to ensure supply, storage, sale or otherwise that the conditions of the license are adhered to and necessary directions can also be given for the purpose.

It was held that the amendment notified by the Excise Commissioner as a delegate of the Financial Commissioner was per se ultra vires the powers of the latter under Section 6 and 13(a) read with Section 58(2)(e) of the Act.

“To hold that the power of Financial Commissioner under Section 59(a) of the Act to regulate sale of liquor, and that sale could be regulated through grant of licence, the Financial Commissioner was vested with the power to determine the number of licences, to our mind is not only unreasonable but also unsustainable. Such an interpretation amounts to reading words into the statute which the legislature itself never intended. … While the State Government would have the power to determine the number of licences and to issue licence for a local area only, the Excise Commissioner would have a superior power to determine the number of licences and issue licences for the entire State.”

Rule 24(i-eeee) as amended by the Financial Commissioner in exercise of powers under Section 59(a) of the Act was hence, struck down for being ultra vires the powers of the Financial Commissioner under the Act.

Dissenting Opinion by Joseph, J:

Noticing that in Section 59, legislature has also empowered the financial Commissioner to make rules inter alia to regulate the manufacture, supply, storage or sale or any intoxicant, Joseph, J said:

“In regard to rule making power, undoubtedly, the legislature has specifically conferred rule making power qua the number of licences in any local area upon the State. Unless it can be reasoned that the powers to regulate sale of liquor within the meaning of Section 59 which is undoubtedly placed on the shoulders of the financial Commissioner would not include the power to make rules in regard to the number of licences for the State as a whole, the argument of the appellant must fail.”

He further emphasised on the connotation of the word ‘regulate’ and said:

“having regard to the connotation of the word ‘regulate’ it would include power to control the sale of liquor under the Act. Control of sale is possible by providing for licences as it is through licencing that the authority can provide for conditions under which the sale could be best controlled. If the power to regulate include the power to stipulate licences it undoubtedly also would include power to provide for number of licences qua the State as a whole a matter which I have reasoned does not fall under Section 58(2)(e) of the Act.”

[International Spirits and Wines Association of India v. State of Haryana, 2019 SCC OnLine SC 183, decided on 12.02.2019]

Amendments to existing lawsLegislation Updates

In order to comprehensively review the implementation, assess the impact on the ground and to examine the challenges faced in the implementation of Waqf Properties Lease Rules (WPLRs), 2014 (notified on 5.6.2014 and modified on 26.8.2015), a Committee headed by Justice (Retd) Zaki Ullah Khan, of Allahabad High Court was constituted by the Ministry of Minority Affairs on 7th March, 2018.

As per Waqf Management System of India (WAMSI) online portal, 5,76,457 waqf properties are registered with Waqf Boards. As per information received from Central Waqf Council, 24,831 cases pertaining to waqf properties are pending in different courts.

Justice Zaki Ullah Khan Committee, in its report submitted on 17.1.2019, has made several recommendations which inter-alia include  enhancement of competitive bids limit for lease of  waqf property  from Rs 1000 to Rs 3000 per month;  reduction in reserve price per square feet for lease of waqf property from 2% per annum to 1% per annum for hospitals, educational institutions and social sectors and from 2.5% per annum to 1.5% per annum for commercial activities; reduction in  security deposit payable on  tenancy periods; increase in lease tenure period in case of shops  from 5 years to 10 years and so on.

[Source: PIB]

Ministry of Minority Affairs


Picture Credits: allgov.com

Legislation UpdatesNotifications

G.S.R. 63(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 (Amendment) Rules, 2019.
(2) Save as otherwise provided in these rules, they shall come into force on the first day of February, 2019.

2. In the Central Goods and Services Tax Rules, 2017 (hereinafter referred to as the said rules), in Chapter-II, in the heading, for the words “Composition Rules”, the words, “Composition Levy” shall be substituted.

3. In the said rules, in Rule 7, in the Table, against serial number (3), in column (3), for the word “goods”, the words, “goods and services” shall be substituted.

4. In the said rules, in Rule 8, in sub-rule (1),–

   (a) the first proviso shall be omitted;
(b) in the second proviso, for the words “Provided further”, the word “Provided” shall be substituted.

5. In the said rules, for Rule 11, the following rule shall be substituted, namely:-

   “11 Separate registration for multiple places of business within a State or a Union territory- (1) Any person having multiple places of business within a State or a Union territory, requiring a separate registration for any such place of business under sub-section (2) of section 25 shall be granted separate registration in respect of each such place of business subject to the following conditions, namely:-

     (a) such person has more than one place of business as defined in clause (85) of Section 2;
(b) such person shall not pay tax under Section 10 for any of his places of business if he is paying tax under Section 9 for any other place of business;
(c) all separately registered places of business of such person shall pay tax under the Act on supply of goods or services or both made to another registered place of business of such person and issue a tax invoice or a bill of supply, as the case may be, for such supply.

Explanation – For the purposes of clause (b), it is hereby clarified that where any place of business of a registered person that has been granted a separate registration becomes ineligible to pay tax under Section 10, all other registered places of business of the said person shall become ineligible to pay tax under the said section.

(2) A registered person opting to obtain separate registration for a place of business shall submit a separate application in FORM GST REG-01 in respect of such place of business.

(3) The provisions of Rule 9 and Rule 10 relating to the verification and the grant of registration shall, mutatis mutandis, apply to an application submitted under this rule”.

6. In the said rules, after Rule 21, the following rule shall be inserted, namely:-

“Rule 21 A. Suspension of registration– (1) Where a registered person has applied for cancellation of registration under Rule 20, the registration shall be deemed to be suspended from the date of submission of the application or the date from which the cancellation is sought, whichever is later, pending the completion of proceedings for cancellation of registration under rule 22.

(2) Where the proper officer has reasons to believe that the registration of a person is liable to be cancelled under Section 29 or under Rule 21, he may, after affording the said person a reasonable opportunity of being heard, suspend the registration of such person with effect from a date to be determined by him, pending the completion of the proceedings for cancellation of registration under Rule 22.

(3) A registered person, whose registration has been suspended under sub-rule (1) or sub-rule (2), shall not make any taxable supply during the period of suspension and shall not be required to furnish any return under Section 39.

(4) The suspension of registration under sub-rule (1) or sub-rule (2) shall be deemed to be revoked upon completion of the proceedings by the proper officer under Rule 22 and such revocation shall be effective from the date on which the suspension had come into effect.”

Follow the link for the detailed notification: Notification

[F. No. 20/06/16/2018-GST (Pt. II)]

Business NewsNews

In a significant boost to the dwindling textile sector, the Union Ministry of Textiles has introduced Amended Technology Upgradation Funds Scheme (ATUFS) for wider financial and operational benefits for players in the entire value chain. New scheme allows cooperative banks to lend to units for tech upgrade, LLP firms can also benefit; synthetic textiles to get a leg up. Introduced first in 1999 to replace age-old technology with brand new ones for improving operational efficiency of textiles units, the TUFS was revised and upgraded time and again to incorporate new players and encourage them bring in new investments in the sector. Industry sources estimate billions of rupees of new investment post TUFS introduction. The ATUFS allows co-operative banks to lend to textile units for technology upgradation under this scheme. The ATUFS, which is set to benefit the synthetic textile sector immensely, has also been extended to limited liability partnership (LLP) firms. The scheme will also benefit domestic textile units. The Ministry of Textiles had launched ATUFS in place of the erstwhile Technology Upgradation Fund Scheme (TUFS) in 2016 for a period of 7 years ending March 2022. The financial and operational parameters and implementation mechanism for ATUS were notified in February 2016. The government provides credit-linked subsidy under the scheme. Interestingly, the scheme was fraught with difficulties that were brought to the notice of the government. Keeping in view the hardships faced by the industry in getting benefits under the scheme and the demands raised by various stakeholders for streamlining it, the Ministry of Textiles for the first time allowed textile units to take advantage of this scheme in addition to other benefits availed from the state governments. Under the new scheme, applicants who had applied for the unique identification number (UID) under revised and restructured technology upgradation fund scheme (RRTUFS) before 12-01-2016 but to whom UIDs could not be issued for non-availability of funds, will be given a one-time opportunity to apply for subsidy under ATUFS. The revised specification of technology for the machinery for all the eligible segments would be prescribed annually in advance by the technical advisory and monitoring committee (TAMC).

The revised guidelines allow Textile Commissioner to constitute a Technical Committee which will assist the TAMC to prepare an indicative list of manufacturers of machinery. This Committee will meet on monthly basis to update the list of machineries and manufacturers. Most importantly, accessories, attachments, sample machines and spares procured from other manufacturers enlisted in the indicative list will also be eligible for subsidy up to a value of 20 % of basic cost of machinery. Except in the case of merger, acquisition, amalgamation or takeover of an entity, the plant and machinery bought with subsidy under TUFS shall not be disposed of before 10 years of the date of purchase without prior approval of the Textile Commissioner.

[Source: Business Standard]

Amendments to existing lawsLegislation Updates

In exercise of the powers conferred by Section 110 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988 (59 of 1988), the Central Government vide G.S.R. 871(E) notified the Central Motor Vehicles (12th Amendment) Rules, 2018 on 13-09-2018, to amend the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, namely: —

In the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, in Rule 115, in sub-rule (15),-

(i) in clause (a), after the sixth proviso and before the Explanation, the following proviso shall be inserted, namely:-

“Provided also that nothing in this clause shall apply to the special purpose vehicles (armoured and other specialised vehicles) used for operational purposes for maintenance of law and order and internal security, for a period up to 31st December, 2019;”;

(ii) in clause (aa), the following proviso shall be inserted, namely:-

“Provided that nothing in this clause shall apply to the special purpose vehicles (armoured and other specialised vehicles) used for operational purposes for maintenance of law and order and internal security, for a period up to 31-12-2019;”.

Ministry of Road Transport and Highways

Amendments to existing lawsLegislation Updates

Underlining the effort to protect the environment and human health from infectious bio-medical waste, the Bio-Medical Waste Management Rules, 2016 Rules have been amended to improve compliance and strengthen the implementation of environmentally sound management of biomedical waste in India.

These amendments have been made vide Notification G.S.R. 234(E) dated 16-03-2018. The amendment was undertaken after consulting Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Central Pollution Control Board, State Pollution Control Boards, and Health Care Facilities.

The salient features of the Bio-Medical Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2018 are

  • Bio-medical waste generators including hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, dispensaries, veterinary institutions, animal houses, pathological laboratories, blood banks, health care facilities, and clinical establishments will have to phase out chlorinated plastic bags (excluding blood bags) and gloves by 27-03-2019.
  • All healthcare facilities shall make available the annual report on its website within a period of 2 years from date of publication of the Bio-Medical Waste Management (Amendment) Rules, 2018.
  • Operators of common bio-medical waste treatment and disposal facilities shall establish bar coding and global positioning system for handling of bio-medical waste in accordance with guidelines issued by the Central Pollution Control Board by 27-03-2019.
  • The State Pollution Control Boards/Pollution Control Committees have to compile, review and analyze the information received and send its information to the Central Pollution Control Board in a new Form (Form IV A), which seeks detailed information regarding district-wise bio-medical waste generation, information on Health Care Facilities having captive treatment facilities, information on common bio-medical waste treatment and disposal facilities.
  • Every occupier, i.e. a person having administrative control over the institution and the premises generating biomedical waste shall pre-treat the laboratory waste, microbiological waste, blood samples, and blood bags through disinfection or sterilization on-site in the manner as prescribed by the World Health Organization (WHO) or guidelines on safe management of wastes from health care activities and WHO Blue Book 2014 and then sent to the Common bio-medical waste treatment facility for final disposal.

[Press Release no. 1526326, dt. 24-03-2018]

Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: Deciding the question as to whether an award delivered by an Arbitrator, which decides the issue of limitation, can be said to be an interim award, and whether such interim award can then be set aside under Section 34 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996, the bench of R.F. Nariman and Navin Sinha, JJ observed that Parliament may consider amending Section 34 of the Act so as to consolidate all interim awards together with the final arbitral award, so that one challenge under Section 34 can be made after delivery of the final arbitral award.

They said:

“Piecemeal challenges like piecemeal awards lead to unnecessary delay and additional expense.”

Explaining the scheme of Section 32(1) of the Act, the bench said that as per the said provision, the arbitral proceedings would be terminated only by the final arbitral award, as opposed to an interim award, thus making it clear that there can be one or more interim awards, prior to a final award, which conclusively determine some of the issues between the parties, culminating in a final arbitral award which ultimately decides all remaining issues between the parties.

Though it was held that any point of dispute between the parties which has to be answered by the arbitral tribunal can be the subject matter of an interim arbitral award, the Court, however, added a note of caution and said:

“In an appropriate case, the issue of more than one award may be necessitated on the facts of that case. However, by dealing with the matter in a piecemeal fashion, what must be borne in mind is that the resolution of the dispute as a whole will be delayed and parties will be put to additional expense. The arbitral tribunal should, therefore, consider whether there is any real advantage in delivering interim awards or in proceeding with the matter as a whole and delivering one final award, bearing in mind the avoidance of delay and additional expense. Ultimately, a fair means for resolution of all disputes should be uppermost in the mind of the arbitral tribunal.”

The Court, hence, held that such an award, which does not relate to the arbitral tribunal’s own jurisdiction under Section 16, does not have to follow the drill of Section 16(5) and (6) of the Act but the Parliament may consider amending the relevant provision to consolidate all interim awards together with the final arbitral award. [Indian Farmers Fertilizer Co-Operative Limited v. Bhadra Products,  2018 SCC OnLine SC 38, decided on 23.01.2018]

Legislation UpdatesNotifications

On 12.12.2017, Central Government, in consultation with the Reserve Bank of India, made the Prevention of Money Laundering (Maintenance of Records) Seventh Amendment Rules, 2017, thereby replacing the requirement of submitting “the Aadhaar number and Permanent Account Number by December 31, 2017” under proviso (a) to Rule 9(17) of the Prevention of Money Laundering (Maintenance of Records) Rules, 2005 with “submit the Aadhaar number, and Permanent Account Number or Form No. 60, by such date as may be notified by the Central Government.”

As a consequence, the proviso (c) to the said Rule, will now read as:

“Provided that in case the client already having an account based relationship with reporting entities prior to the date of publication of this notification in the official gazette fails to submit the Aadhaar number and PAN by such date as may be notified by the central government, the said account shall cease to be operational till the time the Aadhaar number and Permanent Account Number is submitted by the client.”

The said Amendment Rules have come into force after the Central Government submitted before the Supreme Court on 07.12.2017 that it will extend the deadline for linking Aadhaar  from 31.12.2017 to 31.03.2018, after  Senior Advocate Shyam Divan asked the Court to hear the matter urgently for interim relief as the deadline for Aadhaar linking was approaching. The Court accepted the submission and the Aadhaar matter will now be heard by a Constitution Bench tomorrow for interim relief.