Putting the Brakes on Highway Tolls: Extending the Model Code of Conduct to Existing Contracts?

It is election season and the Model Code of Conduct for the Guidance of Political Parties and Candidates (MCC)[1] has been in operation since elections were announced on March 16, 2024. The MCC provides that from the time elections are announced by the Election Commission (EC), ministers and other authorities shall not announce or promise any financial grants in any form.[2] The stated purpose of this prohibition is to ensure that the party in power is not accused of using its official position for the purposes of the election campaign.[3]

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Commercial Purchases: Conundrum under Consumer Protection Laws

Introduction: Commercial Enterprise and Its Commercial Purpose

The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 (“Act”), and the amended Consumer Protection Act, 2019 (“New Act”), are the go-to sources of reference for consumer disputes and conflicts. The Section 2(1)(d) of the Act and Section 2(7) of the New Act both define who “is” and “is not” a “consumer”. Both Acts state that a customer is any person who purchases goods or avails services for any consideration; however, any person purchasing goods or availing services for resale or any commercial purpose[1] to make profit/gain is not a consumer. An explanation to the provisions clarifies that despite buying goods or availing services a person would still be classified as a consumer (under both the Acts) if these goods or services constitute a source of livelihood by means of self-employment.

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Relevant or Relied Upon? Bombay High Court Clears Air on Disclosure of Information by Banks in Wilful Defaulter Proceedings

In Mr. Milind Patel v. Union Bank of India & Ors.[1] (“Judgment”), the Division Bench of the Bombay High Court (“Court”) has inter alia held that lenders/ banks seeking to invoke the Reserve Bank of India, Master Circular on Wilful Defaulters (“Master Circular”) for declaring entities and/ or persons as wilful defaulters, must supply all relevant materials to the noticee, which includes not only incriminating material but also exculpatory material. The Court therefore clarified that a bank is obligated to provide all relevant materials and not just information ‘referred to’ and ‘relied upon’ in the show-cause notice when conducting proceedings under the Master Circular.

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Deciphering Court Fee Refunds: A Comparative Analysis of Settlement via ADR v. Private Settlement

Introduction

In the Indian jurisprudence, the levy of court fee is inter alia sanctioned by the Court Fees Act, 1870 (“Court Fee Act”) for the purpose of instituting a suit or claim by a party to the matter or litigation. The payment of court fee is a condition precedent for seeking the aid of the court. The amount to be paid as court fee is prescribed by law and until the pre-determined amount is paid, the litigant cannot be heard, save with the leave of the court. However, if the parties to a suit come to a mutual understanding to resolve the dispute amicably, the law also prescribes for a procedure for providing a refund of the previously paid court fee by the litigant. The only remaining question that begs determination is when and how much of the court fee will be refunded to the litigant.

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Demystifying Deadline Dilemmas: Analysing the limitation period of Section 11(6) Petitions in Arbitral proceedings in India

INTRODUCTION

Superior courts in India have ratified the stringent deadlines for the various stages in arbitration proceedings, aiming to position India as an arbitration hub. However, it is crucial to establish safeguards to prevent delays in the adjudication process from discouraging the parties’ decision to engage in arbitration. The absence of a prescribed limitation period in certain key provisions of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 (“A&C Act”), could be a contributing factor to some of these delays.

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Arrests under PMLA: Arrest first, reasons to follow?

INTRODUCTION

Vide order dated March 20, 2024, the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India rejected a petition[1] preferred by the Union of India, seeking a review of the judgement passed in Pankaj Bansal v Union of India[2](“Pankaj Bansal”), wherein it was held that it was mandatory for the Directorate of Enforcement (“ED”) to provide written ‘reasons for arrest’ to a person arrested under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 (“PMLA”).

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Writ Jurisdiction over Arbitral Proceedings an ‘Exceptional Rarity’: Delhi High Court Reiterates

The Indian Constitution bestows upon the High Courts “extraordinary writ jurisdiction”. While Article 226 empowers Courts to protect and enforce fundamental as well legal rights, Article 227 confers on them the power of superintendence over all courts and tribunals within their jurisdiction.

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Courting Controversies: Dispute Resolution finds a sweet spot in Indian Media Industry

India’s media and entertainment industry has always been close-knit. It has thrived on inter-personal relationships and handshake deals rather than extensive legal contracts, which worked well for decades. The far and few litigations over the years was telling of this fact.

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Final Word on Enforceability of Unstamped Arbitration Agreements

“It [law of arbitration] is to be expeditious where the law is slow, cheap where the law is costly, simple where the law is technical, a peacemaker instead of a stirrer-up of strife.”[1]

Are arbitration clauses in unstamped or inadequately stamped agreements enforceable? This is a question that has been under legal scrutiny and has seen conflicting views from various constitutional benches of the Supreme Court for over half a decade.

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Bombay High Court upholds NCLT’s decision to release ED attached properties after nod to IBC Resolution Plan

The High Court of Bombay (“Court”) in a recent judgment[1] has upheld the NCLT’s powers to direct the Directorate of Enforcement (“ED”) to release attached properties of a corporate debtor, once a resolution plan in respect of the corporate debtor had been approved. The Court’s decision was based on an interpretation of Section 32A of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (“IBC”).

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