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New Aadhaar law, Companies Act among 10 ordinances on agenda for first session of 17th Lok Sabha

Joe C Mathew     June 17, 2019

As the first session of the 17th Lok Sabha, which began on Monday gets into legislative business by the end of the week, the initial focus will be on replacing the 10 ordinances that were promulgated during the inter-session period by Acts of Parliament. The ordinances will cease to operate by August 1, 2019.

Of these ordinances, there are several ones of economic significance. For instance, The Companies (Second Amendment) Ordinance, 2019 promulgated on February 21, 2019 amends several provisions in the Companies Act, 2013 including re-categorisation of certain offences. Of the 81 compoundable offences, which may lead to imprisonment, 16 has been re-categorised as civil defaults. This includes offences like issuance of shares at a discount and failure to file annual returns.

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It also tweaks the commencement of business stipulations, rules regarding declaration of beneficial ownership etc to make it more stringent. The Aadhaar and Other Laws (Amendment) Ordinance is another economic legislation. In this case, the purpose was to permit offline verification of the identity of an individual Aadhaar number holder, as an alternative to biometric authentication. The ordinance also tweaks the rules that govern the entities which use Aadhaar. With the tweak, UIDAI will have the right to allow authentication through Aadhaar, if it is satisfied that the entity is compliant with certain standards of privacy and security, or permitted by law, or is seeking authentication for a purpose specified by the central government in the interest of the state.

The Indian Medical Council (Amendment) Second Ordinance, The Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes Ordinance, The New Delhi International Arbitration Centre Ordinance, The Homeopathy Central Council (Amendment) Ordinance and The Special Economic Zones (Amendment) Ordinance are some of the other economic rules that will get legislative approval during the current session. The Central Educational Institutions (Reservation in Teachers' Cadre) Ordinance, The Muslim Women (Protection of Rights on Marriage) Second Ordinance, 2019 and The Jammu and Kashmir Reservation (Amendment) Ordinance are the other three that will be introduced in the Lok Sabha in the coming days.

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Some of the 46 Bills that lapsed on dissolution of 16th Lok Sabha may also be revived and brought before the Parliament.

The current session will see the presentation of Economic Survey and Union Budget 2019-20 in the first week of July. The session will come to an end on July 22.

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