Regulatory bodies need to upgrade, say experts

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Published: August 30, 2019 5:31:27 AM

“A lot of tribunals which were created as a special body of adjudicators have become havens for retired bureaucrats and judges. It is also time the people who man these bodies are experts in the field,” Supreme Court judge Sanjay Kishan Kaul said, participating in the debate ‘Regulatory Vision for Naya India’.

Regulatory bodies,  Supreme Court, NITI Aayog CEO, Amitabh Kant, CCI chief,  e-commerce“Regulations are meant for markets. As technology disruptions take place in sectors such as e-commerce, digital payments, etc — we need cutting edge people,” NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said.

India’s regulatory bodies must evolve quickly to understand the new-age economy and markets to contribute towards growth of the economy, which is hindered by the extant heavy-handed regulations and litigations, several panellists said in a debate on Thursday.

“A lot of tribunals which were created as a special body of adjudicators have become havens for retired bureaucrats and judges. It is also time the people who man these bodies are experts in the field,” Supreme Court judge Sanjay Kishan Kaul said, participating in the debate ‘Regulatory Vision for Naya India’.

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“Regulations are meant for markets. As technology disruptions take place in sectors such as e-commerce, digital payments, etc — we need cutting edge people,” NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant said. He added that part of the problem is understanding of markets among bureaucracy and across the institutions is extremely poor.

Challenge in the new-age economy is how to define the market, CCI chief Ashok Gupta said. “We can’t say that a dominant player is working against the interest of consumers. Because of network effect, they are able to give better service to consumers also,” he said.

There is also dilemma that whether there should be 2-3 platforms? “We have to be cautious. If we apply enforcement provisions, it could kill the sector (e-commerce). They have to reach certain heights,” he added.

In November last year, the CCI had stated that no online marketplace platform commanded a dominant position in the market in an order and rejecting complaints against Flipkart and Amazon.

Justice Kaul said though the tendering process was meant to bring in transparency in the public sector, it has actually hurt the PSUs in a competitive environment with private sector. He said litigation on contracts are clogging the system. World Bank’s India director Junaid K Ahmad said many countries have moved from socialist to regulatory state without developing markets.

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