Wednesday, March 21, 2018

TN Bill seeks to regulate clinical establishments


Sources: Dinamalar ePaper

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Bill seeks to regulate clinical establishments in State

SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT 

CHENNAI, MARCH 21, 2018 00:00 IST

It will authorise the government to prescribe minimum standards for facilities, services

With the aim of streamlining medical establishments in the State, the Tamil Nadu government on Tuesday introduced a Bill in the Assembly that seeks to suitably amend the Tamil Nadu Private Clinical Establishment (Regulation) Act, 1997, to provide for registration and regulation of all clinical establishments in the State, and to prescribe minimum standards for facilities and services to be provided by them.

The first among the duties and responsibilities of every clinical establishment is to “administer first aid and take other lifesaving or stabilising emergency measures in all medico-legal or potentially medico-legal cases, such as road accidents, accidental or induced burns or poisoning or criminal assaults and the like, when the victims present themselves at the clinical establishment.”

Penalties for violations

The Bill, once enacted, will authorise the government to prescribe minimum standards for facilities and services in respect of different categories of clinical establishments under all recognised systems of medicine.

Introduced in the House by Health Minister C. Vijaya Baskar, the Bill also provides for the constitution of a State Level Advisory Committee to advise the government on the regulation of these establishments, District Committees for the registration of these units, besides providing for the levy of penalties in case of any contravention of the rules. Anyone operating a clinical establishment without obtaining due registration would be liable for punishment with a fine of Rs. 5,000 (which may extend to Rs. 50,000).

General hospitals, including dental hospitals, maternity hospitals, dispensaries, consulting rooms, clinics, polyclinics and nursing homes are to come under the ambit of ‘clinical establishments’.

Any institution or centre, where a physically or mentally-ill, injured or infirm person is admitted either as an in-patient or an out-patient with or without the aid of operative procedures, also comes under the purview of the Act.

While the Director of Medical and Rural Health Services would be the ex officio chairperson of the State-level advisory committee, district committees would be chaired by the respective deputy directors of Medical and Rural Health Services. The decision to amend the Act follows the recommendations made by a committee , following the enactment of the Clinical Establishment Act, 2010, by the Centre.

Though the State government had earlier enacted the Tamil Nadu Private Clinical Establishment (Regulation) Act, 1997, the provisions of the Act were not implemented due to non-framing of the rules.


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Clinical Establishment Act to cover all govt., pivate hospitals

SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT

CHENNAI, MARCH 23, 2018 00:00 IST

Rules for basic amenities to be notified

The State is poised to have a Clinical Establishment Act that will cover private and government hospitals, nursing homes, dispensaries and diagnostic facilities, including those under AYUSH.

The law, an amendment of the existing Tamil Nadu Private Clinical Establishment Act enacted first in 1997, will bring under its ambit all clinical establishments, would be in effect after the Governor’s approval.

Health Minister C. Vijaya Baskar said on Thursday that rules would be framed after the Act had been approved. The rules would delineate the basic requirements for a medical establishment — be it a diagnostic centre, dispensary, nursing home, clinic or hospital.

“The aim is to ensure that basic amenities required for quality care are maintained in a healthcare facility. The Act would cover private and government facilities. We have consulted all doctors’ associations, including AYUSH, and they all wanted such an Act. The Assembly has also approved it,” he said.

9 months to register

The existing establishments would be given nine months to register with the government and the new ones would get six months. The details of all the registered hospitals would be on public domain. No concession would be given to any hospital, Dr. Vijaya Baskar said.

“The idea is not to punish but to ensure quality care. The norms would specify the requirement for a facility, the number of beds, the intensive care unit requirements, space, number of doctors and nurses. This would give people an assurance of quality of the hospital and the quality of care given by it,” Dr. Vijaya Baskar explained.

Health Secretary J. Radhakrishnan said within two three days of passing the Act the rules would be in place. The Act and the rules would be framed in consultation with the Law department and within a week the rules would be in force.

Establishments that do not comply with the rules would be fined a minimum of Rs. 5,000 and a maximum of Rs. 50,000. Repeat offences could lead to cancellation of their registration, he added.

The Act was envisaged to bring under one law all facilities instead of the present system of separate laws to govern scan centres, family planning centres, and organ donations.

Sources: http://www.thehindu.com


Thursday, March 8, 2018

The Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2017


The Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2017 

The Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017 is available at: https://dea.gov.in

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Cabinet clears Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill

TCA Sharad Raghavan 

NEW DELHI, MARCH 01, 2018 18:56 IST

It provides for confiscation of assets even without conviction and paying lenders by selling off the fugitive’s properties

The Union Cabinet on March 1, 2018, approved a stringent Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill that provides for confiscation of assets even without conviction in cases where economic offenders flee the country, and paying the lenders by selling off the fugitive’s properties. Such persons will be tried under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

The draft bill is aimed at deterring someone like jeweller Nirav Modi, who fled the country and has not returned to face trial in the Punjab National Bank fraud case.

According to sources, there will be a list of scheduled offences along with the Bill. If a person committed an offence on the list, and a competent court issued an arrest warrant, and the person left the country to avoid this, then the court could deem him or her a fugitive economic offender, the sources said.

Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said on Thursday, “We can't allow people to make a mockery of the law, that they first indulge in loot, and then leave the country to avoid the law.”

Official sources said the Cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved the Bill, which is likely to be brought before Parliament in the second half of the budget session beginning March 5.

The provisions of the Bill will apply to persons against whom an arrest warrant has been issued for a scheduled offence as well as wilful bank loan defaulters with outstanding loans of over ₹100 crore.

National Financial Reporting Authority

The Cabinet also approved the creation of a National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA). Section 132 of the Companies Act provides for its constitution.

The authority will apply to only certain companies that will be notified in the rules. These will include all listed companies, and large unlisted companies. The size of these unlisted companies will be decided in the rules.

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India will continue its audit procedures for smaller companies. According to Mr. Jaitley, the NFRA will investigate matters of misconduct by chartered accountants.

(With inputs from PTI)


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Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017: all you need to know

March 3, 2018, Forum IAS

Context:

* After the Nirav Modi–PNB fraud worth more than ₹12,000 crore, the Union Cabinet has approved the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017.

Background:

* 2017: The Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill 2017 was first mentioned by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in his Budget speech in 2017-18.

* It came against the backdrop of bringing back Vijay Mallya, who owes over Rs 9,000 crore in the Kingfisher Airlines fraud case. 

Who is a ‘fugitive economic offender’?

* According to Section 4 of the law, a ‘fugitive economic offender’ is “any individual against whom a warrant for arrest in relation to a scheduled offence has been issued by any court in India, who:

* leaves or has left India so as to avoid criminal prosecution; or

* refuses to return to India to face criminal prosecution.”

What are the reasons for which the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017 has been introduced?

The reasons for which the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017 has been introduced are as follows:

* There have been several instances of economic offenders fleeing the jurisdiction of Indian courts, anticipating the commencement, or during the pendency, of criminal proceedings.

* The absence of such offenders from Indian courts has several harmful consequences such as :

* it hampers investigation in criminal cases,

* it wastes precious time of courts of law, third, it undermines the rule of law in India, and

* most such cases of economic offences involve non-repayment of bank loans thereby worsening the financial health of the banking sector in India.

* The existing civil and criminal provisions in law are not entirely adequate to deal with the severity of the problem.

* It is, therefore, felt necessary to provide an effective, expeditious and constitutionally permissible deterrent to ensure that such actions are curbed.

* Thus, a Budget announcement was made by the Government in the Budget 2017-18 that the Government was considering to introduce legislative changes or even a new law to confiscate the assets of such absconders till they submit to the jurisdiction of the appropriate legal forum.

* It may be mentioned that the non-conviction-based asset confiscation for corruption-related cases is enabled under provisions of United Nations Convention against Corruption (ratified by India in 2011).

* The Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017 adopts this principle.

What are the aims and objectives of Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017?

The aims and objectives of Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017 are as follows:

Aim:

* The Bill aims to stop economic offenders who leave the country to avoid due process.

* Economic offences are those that are defined under the Indian Penal Code, the Prevention of Corruption Act, the SEBI Act, the Customs Act, the Companies Act, Limited Liability Partnership Act, and the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code.

* Offences involving amounts of ₹100 crore or more fall under the purview of this law

Objectives of the Bill:

* The Bill is expected to re-establish the rule of law with respect to the fugitive economic offenders as they would be forced to return to India to face trial for scheduled offences.

* This would also help the banks and other financial institutions to achieve higher recovery from financial defaults committed by such fugitive economic offenders, improving the financial health of such institutions.

* It is expected that the special forum to be created for expeditious confiscation of the proceeds of crime, in India or abroad, would force the fugitive to return to India to submit to the jurisdiction of Courts in India to face the law in respect of scheduled offences.

What are the salient features of the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017?

The salient features of the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017 are as follows:

* The Bill primarily empowers the government and investigating agencies to confiscate property and assets of economic offenders and defaulters who flee India.

* It covers a wide range of offences, including wilful loan defaults, cheating and forgery, forged or fraudulent document of electronic records, duty evasion, non-repayment of deposits and others.

* The Bill also proposes setting up of a “Special Court” under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, which will declare a person a “fugitive economic offender”.

What are the legal procedures through which the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017 will be implemented?

The legal procedures through which the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017 will be implemented are as follows:

How a person is declared an offender?

A Director, appointed by the central government, will have to file an application to a Special Court to declare a person as a ‘fugitive economic offender’. Under Clause (2) of Section 6, the application must contain:

* Reason/s for the belief that an individual is a fugitive economic offender;

* Any information available as to the whereabouts of the fugitive economic offender;

* A list of properties or the value of such properties believed to be the proceeds of crime, including any such property outside India for which confiscation is sought;

* A list of properties owned by the person in India for which confiscation is sought;

* A list of persons who may have an interest in any of the properties listed under sub-clauses (c) and (d).”

* The Director has the power to attach any property the accused holds.

What does the offender has to do?

* The Court will issue a notice to the person named a ‘fugitive economic offender’.

* Within six weeks from the date of notice, the person will have to present themselves at “a specified place at a specified time”.

* If the offender fails to do so, they will be declared a ‘fugitive economic offender’ and their properties as listed in the Director’s application will be confiscated.

Once property is confiscated, can the offender file a civil claim?

* No, once property is confiscated, the offender cannot file a civil claim.

* Section 11 of the Act disqualifies those declared as offenders from either filing or defending a civil claim in court.

What happens to the confiscated properties of the offender?

* The Special court will appoint an ‘administrator’ to oversee the confiscated property.

* This person will be responsible for disposing of the property as well, and the property will be used to satisfy creditors’ claims.

Are there any existing laws under which economic offenders are tried?

Yes there any existing laws under which economic offenders are tried.

* The existing laws under which economic offenders are tried include Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act, 2002, (Sarfaesi), Recovery of Debts Due to Banks and Financial Institutions Act, 1993, and Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code.

* The current law framework allows the Enforcement Directorate to seize the property and assets of an accused as per the rules under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

* But the existing laws do not allow complete “non-conviction” based asset attachment without any encumbrances.

Conclusion:

The Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017 sounds promising enough to bring transparency and justice for cases like PNB fraud accused Nirav Modi or Kingfisher Airlines fraud accused Vijay Mallya.


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Cabinet approves Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2018: Offences worth Rs.100 cr or more under Scanner 

March 1, 2018 7:07 pm| By Tax Scan Team 

The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved the proposal of the Ministry of Finance to introduce the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2018  in Parliament.

The Bill would help in  laying down measures to deter economic offenders from evading the process of Indian law by remaining outside the jurisdiction of Indian courts.

The cases where the total value involved in such offences is Rs.100 crore or more, will come under the purview of this Bill.

Impact

The Bill is expected to re-establish the rule of law with respect to the fugitive economic offenders as they would be forced to return to India to face trial for scheduled offences. This would also help the banks and other financial institutions to achieve higher recovery from financial defaults committed by such fugitive economic offenders, improving the financial health of such institutions.

It is expected that the special forum to be created for expeditious confiscation of the proceeds of crime, in India or abroad, would coerce the fugitive to return to India to submit to the jurisdiction of Courts in India to face the law in respect of scheduled offences.

Salient features of the Bill:

* Application before the Special Court for a declaration that an individual is a fugitive economic offender;

* Attachment of the property of a fugitive economic offender;

* Issue of a notice by the Special Court to the individual alleged to be a fugitive economic offender;

* Confiscation of the property of an individual declared as a fugitive economic offender resulting from the proceeds of crime;

* Confiscation of other  property belonging to such offender in India and abroad, including benami property;
* Disentitlement of the fugitive economic offender from defending any civil claim; and

* An Administrator will be appointed to manage and dispose of the confiscated property under the Act.

* If at any point of time in the course of the proceeding prior to the declaration, however, the alleged Fugitive Economic Offender returns to India and submits to the appropriate jurisdictional Court, proceedings under the proposed Act would cease by law. 

* All necessary constitutional safeguards in terms of providing hearing to the person through counsel, allowing him time to file a reply, serving notice of summons to him, whether in India or abroad and appeal to the High Court have been provided for. Further, provision has been made for appointment of an Administrator to manage and dispose of the property in compliance with the provisions of law.

Implementation strategy and targets:

In order to address the lacunae in the present laws and lay down measures to deter economic offenders from evading the process of Indian law by remaining outside the jurisdiction of Indian courts, the Bill is being proposed. The Bill makes provisions for a Court (‘Special Court’ under the Prevention of Money-laundering Act, 2002) to declare a person as a Fugitive Economic Offender.

A Fugitive Economic Offender is a person against whom an arrest warrant has been issued in respect of a scheduled offence and who has left India so as to avoid criminal prosecution, or being abroad, refuses to return to India to face criminal prosecution. A scheduled offence refers to a list of economic offences contained in the Schedule to this Bill. Further, in order to ensure that Courts are not over-burdened with such cases, only those cases where the total value involved in such offences is 100 crore rupees or more, is within the purview of this Bill.

There have been several instances of economic offenders fleeing the jurisdiction of Indian courts, anticipating the commencement, or during the pendency, of criminal proceedings. The absence of such offenders from Indian courts has several deleterious consequences – first, it hampers investigation in criminal cases; second, it wastes precious time of courts of law, third, it undermines the rule of law in India. Further, most such cases of economic offences involve non-repayment of bank loans thereby worsening the financial health of the banking sector in India.

The existing civil and criminal provisions in law are not entirely adequate to deal with the severity of the problem. It is, therefore, felt necessary to provide an effective, expeditious and constitutionally permissible deterrent to ensure that such actions are curbed. It may be mentioned that the non-conviction-based asset confiscation for corruption-related cases is enabled under provisions of United Nations Convention against Corruption (ratified by India in 2011).

The Bill adopts this principle. In view of the above context, a Budget announcement was made by the Government in the Budget 2017-18 that the Government was considering to introduce legislative changes or even a new law to confiscate the assets of such absconders till they submit to the jurisdiction of the appropriate legal forum.


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The Hindu explains: The Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017

Sruthi Radhakrishnan 

MARCH 02, 2018 17:10 IST

After the Nirav Modi–PNB fraud worth more than ₹12,000 crore, the Union Cabinet has approved the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017.

After it was known that Vijay Mallya had fled the country to avoid being arrested for economic fraud, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had announced in last year’s Union Budget that the government would soon bring about a law that would allow the state to take possession of properties belonging to such offenders.

Now, after the Nirav Modi–PNB fraud worth more than ₹12,000 crore, the Union Cabinet has approved the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill, 2017.

What is the Bill?

The Bill aims to stop economic offenders who leave the country to avoid due process. Offences involving amounts of ₹100 crore or more fall under the purview of this law.

Economic offences are those that are defined under the Indian Penal Code, the Prevention of Corruption Act, the SEBI Act, the Customs Act, the Companies Act, Limited Liability Partnership Act, and the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code.

Who is a ‘fugitive economic offender’?

According to Section 4 of the law, a ‘fugitive economic offender’ is “any individual against whom a warrant for arrest in relation to a scheduled offence has been issued by any court in India, who:

(i) leaves or has left India so as to avoid criminal prosecution; or

(ii) refuses to return to India to face criminal prosecution.”

How is a person declared an offender?

A Director, appointed by the central government, will have to file an application to a Special Court to declare a person as a ‘fugitive economic offender’.

Under Clause (2) of Section 6, the application must contain:

“(a) reason/s for the belief that an individual is a fugitive economic offender;

(b) any information available as to the whereabouts of the fugitive economic offender;

(c) a list of properties or the value of such properties believed to be the proceeds of crime, including any such property outside India for which confiscation is sought;

(d) a list of properties owned by the person in India for which confiscation is sought;

(e) a list of persons who may have an interest in any of the properties listed under sub-clauses (c) and (d).”

The Director has the power to attach any property the accused holds.

What does the offender have to do?

The Court will issue a notice to the person named a ‘fugitive economic offender’. Within six weeks from the date of notice, the person will have to present themselves at “a specified place at a specified time”. If the offender fails to do so, they will be declared a ‘fugitive economic offender’ and their properties as listed in the Director’s application will be confiscated.

Once property is confiscated, can the offender file a civil claim?

No. Section 11 of the Act disqualifies those declared as offenders from either filing or defending a civil claim in court.

What happens to the properties?

The Special court will appoint an ‘administrator’ to oversee the confiscated property. This person will be responsible for disposing of the property as well, and the property will be used to satisfy creditors’ claims.


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Cabinet okays Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill to avoid a Nirav Modi repeat

ET Bureau|Updated: Mar 02, 2018, 07.40 AM IST

The Cabinet approved a stringent law to confiscate the assets of those who flee the country to escape being brought to account and cleared setting up of an independent regulator for auditors that is already permitted under the companies law. The decisions follow the ₹12,622-crore fraud at Punjab National Bank involving jewellers Nirav Modi, Mehul Choksi and their companies that went undetected for years, raising questions about the competency of audits at multiple levels. 

Finance minister Arun Jaitley said the government will try and get the Fugitive Economic Offenders Bill passed in the upcoming second half of the Budget session while details regarding the National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA) will be issued soon. 

Modi and Choksi left the country before the fraud became public. The government has also been unsuccessfully seeking to get Vijay Mallya extradited from the UK for having defaulted on debt repayments of Kingfisher Airlines and being wanted for questioning over money laundering. Former cricket administrator Lalit Modi is another person the government has been trying to bring back without success. 

The fugitive Bill, which will apply with retrospective effect to all such persons as soon it comes into force as per the minister, will cover cases in which the total value is ₹100 crore or more to ensure less significant ones don’t overburden the special courts that will hear them. 

Once passed, the legislation will give the government power to attach all the assets of a person who’s been declared a fugitive and not just those acquired from the proceeds of criminal activity. This will also include benami assets. The government will also establish an international cooperative mechanism later to attach even the foreign assets of those declared fugitives. 

“We will try and make sure this is passed as expeditiously as possible because we can’t allow people to make a mockery of law that you first indulge in loot and then refuse to submit to the jurisdiction of our legal system,” Jaitley said, briefing the media about the decision. “I think we have a very responsible Parliament. It can’t come to the aid of such people,” he said when asked if he expected the law to be passed soon. 

The second leg of the Budget session will begin on March 6. 

Jaitley had proposed a stringent law for such offenders in his Budget speech last year with the department of economic affairs issuing a draft Bill for comments. The law will seek to allow the confiscation of assets without encumbrances, implying the government will be able to dispose of them quickly. It will also deny offenders the right to pursue civil claims in the country so that the process is not delayed in the courts. 

A court can declare a person a fugitive based on whether any of the offences listed in the law have been committed. Currently, under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, the Enforcement Directorate provisionally attaches property acquired from the proceeds of crime and gets unencumbered right only after conviction. The process is usually a long-drawn one. 

An administrator will be appointed to manage and dispose of confiscated property under the fugitive Bill. “The existing civil and criminal provisions in law are not entirely adequate to deal with the severity of the problem,” the government said in a statement. 

The Companies Act provides for a National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA) under Section 132 of the law. 

“The decision aims at establishment of NFRA as an independent regulator for the auditing profession which is one of the key changes brought in by the Companies Act, 2013,” the government said in a statement. The NFRA will have jurisdiction for investigation of chartered accountants and their firms engaged with all listed companies and large unlisted public companies, the threshold for which will be prescribed in the rules. 

This will likely curtail the role of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) that has been serving as a regulator as well. 

“The need for establishing NFRA has arisen on account of the need felt across various jurisdictions in the world, in the wake of accounting scams, to establish independent regulators, independent from those it regulates,” the government said. 

The government has been dissatisfied with the conduct of auditors. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had last year said some chartered accountants facilitated the laundering of black money after demonetisation. 

At the Economic Times Global Business Summit last week, Jaitley had said frauds take place despite multiple levels of auditing, with regard to the PNBBSE 1.15 % case. 


Monday, January 8, 2018

RERA Act, 2016

Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016

Real Estate (Regulation and Development) (General) Rules, 2016

Wiki: Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016

Confederation of Real Estate Developers' Associations of India (CREDAI)

Tamil Nadu Real Estate Regulatory Authority

Tamil Nadu Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Rules, 2017




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