The government is likely to seek the Cabinet’s approval on amending the Competition Act 2002 to facilitate the winding up of the Monopolistic and Restrictive Trade Practices Commission before 2011. The Bill will essentially replace the ordinance issued in October this year. The ordinance was to allow winding up the MRTPC at the earliest against 2011 as specified in the Competition Act.
The decision to wind up MRTPC early was taken by the government after the Competition Commission became fully functional in February this year. The reason for advancing the dissolution of MRTPC was the government’s inability to appoint a chairman and members to the Commission. Section 66 of the Competition Act, notified in September, states that the MRTPC will stop taking fresh cases from the date the notification comes into effect. On completion of two years, pending cases will be transferred to the Competition Commission of India (CCI).
However, with few bureaucrats willing to join an organisation that has just two years to go, the ministry decided to wind it up at the earliest. The cases pending with the MRTPC have been taken up by the Competition Appellate Tribunal (CAT) and the National Consumer Forum. The MRTPC has been functioning without a chairman since O P Dwivedi retired in March.