The gig economy in India has been growing at breakneck speed. A recent study ‘Professional Gig Economy 2018-19 Report Card’ undertaken by Flexing It, a gig platform has revealed that as many as 72% of all gig projects were in large corporates and professional services firms in 2018-19 compared with 52% two years back. Plus, most of the professional gig economy segments have seen growth double in two years.
The much anticipated Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019("Bill") finally gathered the Cabinet's approval on December 04, 2019, therefore setting the stage for it to be tabled in front of the Parliament in the current winter session.
The Ministry of Corporate Affairs ("MCA") vide its press release dated November 15, 2019 has notified the Insolvency and Bankruptcy (Insolvency and Liquidation Proceedings of Financial Service Providers and Application to Adjudicating Authority) Rules, 2019 ("Rules"). The Rules provide a framework for the insolvency and liquidation proceedings of systematically important Financial Service Providers ("FSPs") excluding banks.
Related party transactions have once again found themselves the subject of public scrutiny due to occurrences at InterGlobe Aviation Limited ("Interglobe"), which runs and operates the low-cost airline Indigo. Interglobe has been facing stormy weather following a dispute between its promoters, Rakesh Gangwal and Rahul Bhatia. Since mid-2018 the feud between both promoters has snowballed into a very public feud. While there are several contentious issues on which the promoters disagree, one of the main reasons for their public fallout has been over related party transactions. In 2018, Rakesh Gangwal flagged and alleged that Interglobe has entered into related party transactions with several companies associated with Rahul Bhatia, a charge that the latter insists is mala fide.
On November 21, 2019, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, or DPIIT) issued a notification notifying the approved Bilateral Patent Prosecution Highway (PPH) Programme between the Indian Patent Office (IPO)and the Patent Offices of other interested countries/regions. As of now, the PPH programme has been agreed upon and signed between the IPO and the Japan Patent Office.
It is widely considered that independent directors on the board of a company would improve corporate governance, especially given the responsibility of the board to balance various interests. The reason for such belief stems from the opinion that the directors representing specific interests would be confined to the perspective dictated by those interests, whereas, an independent director could bring an element of objectivity to the decision making process of the board with regards to the general interests of the company and also protect minority shareholders .
In a bid to facilitate mergers and acquisitions ("Combination") in the country, the Competition Commission of India ("CCI") has taken inspiration from the customs department and established a 'green channel'. No, it won't save you paper, but it is designed to save you precious hours.
In a world where science and technology evolve at an exponential pace, it is essential that the institutional systems that support the evolution of these industries also keep up with the pace. But the Indian patenting system has been often criticized over the years for its slow and long drawn out processing time. This processing pace naturally affects the quality and quantity of applications as well, and it is possible that foreign innovators or entities may be losing interest in filing for patents in India for this reason.
The Reserve Bank of India (“RBI”) has released a discussion paper on ‘Guidelines for Payment Gateways and Payment Aggregators’ for public comment (“Discussion Paper”). The Discussion Paper envisages payment gateways such as Paytm, Mobikwik, Bharat Bill Pay, PayUmoney etc. having to adhere to RBI guidelines. The Discussion Paper highlights the RBI’s concern for safeguarding the online experience of consumers while making payments and the role of intermediaries in conducting such transactions.
Observing that "the race between technology and the law could be termed as a hare and tortoise race - as technology gallops, the law tries to keep pace", the Delhi High Court on October 23, 2019 ruled that Indian courts can issue global takedown orders to platforms such as Facebook, Google and Twitter for illegal content uploaded by users. The Court also held that the provisions of the Information Technology Act, 2000 ("IT Act") had to be interpreted in a manner so as to ensure that judicial orders were effective and "not toothless".