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National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT)

Context:

Recently, the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) upheld the ₹1,337 crore fines imposed on Google by the Competition Commission of India (CCI).

Relevance:

GS II: Polity and Governance (Regulatory Bodies)

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. What did the NCLAT find Google guilty of?
  2. About National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT):
  3. About competition commission of India:

What did the NCLAT find Google guilty of?

  • The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) found Google guilty of abusing its market dominance in the Android ecosystem.
  • The NCLAT’s order largely confirmed the Competition Commission of India’s (CCI) findings from October 2020.
  • The order held that Google’s mandating pre-installation of its Google Mobile Suite (GMS) amounted to imposing unfair conditions on Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs).
  • Google’s requirement of OEMs to sign various agreements, such as the Anti-fragmentation Agreement (AFA) and Android Compatibility Commitment Agreement (ACC), before pre-installing its GMS suite, was found to have reduced the ability and incentive of manufacturers to develop and sell self-device operating or alternative versions of Android and Android Forks.
  • By bundling products like its search engine or the Chrome browser, Google perpetuated its dominant position, the NCLAT said.
  • The NCLAT held that the CCI’s order against Google did not violate the principles of “natural justice” and was based on relevant material submitted to it.
  • It is unclear if Google will challenge the NCLAT order, but a Google spokesperson said that the company was evaluating its legal options.

About National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT):

The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) is a judicial body established under Section 410 of the Companies Act, 2013.

Functions:
  • Hearing appeals: The primary function of NCLAT is to hear appeals against the orders of the National Company Law Tribunal(s) (NCLT) under Section 61 of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (IBC).
    • Appeals against CCI: NCLAT also hears and disposes of appeals against any direction issued or decision made or order passed by the Competition Commission of India (CCI).
    • Appeals against National Financial Reporting Authority: NCLAT is also responsible for hearing and disposing of appeals against the orders of the National Financial Reporting Authority.

About competition commission of India:

Nodal: Ministry of Corporate affairs

  • Competition Commission of India (CCI) is a statutory body of the Government of India responsible for enforcing the Competition Act, 2002.
  • Competition Commission of India aims to establish a robust competitive environment.
  • Through proactive engagement with all stakeholders, including consumers, industry, government and international jurisdictions.
  • By being a knowledge intensive organization with high competence level.
  • Through professionalism, transparency, resolve and wisdom in enforcement.

Composition of CCI

  • The Commission consists of one Chairperson and six Members.
  • The commission is a quasi-judicial body .
Eligibility of members: 

The Chairperson and every other Member shall be a person of ability, integrity and standing and who, has been, or is qualified to be a judge of a High Court, or, has special knowledge of, and professional experience of not less than fifteen years in international trade, economics, business, commerce, law, finance, accountancy, management, industry, public affairs, administration or in any other matter which, in the opinion of the Central Government, may be useful to the Commission.

-Source: Indian Express


March 2024
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