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MCA aims improved governance standards, ease of doing biz in 2019

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Focused on further improving practices, the will strive to ensure a positive co-relation between high standards for and ease of doing in 2019, according to a

As the curtains come down on an event 2018 that witnessed the IL&FS crisis and the fraud rattling investor sentiments, the corporate affairs ministry will look forward to raise the standards as well as move ahead with various other reform measures.

From strengthening the framework for independent directors to changing norms of governing companies and possible reworking of regulations for auditors, the ministry's plate is full.

Besides, the clampdown on suspected shell companies and stepping up the vigil to curb financial misdoings and actions against perpetrators of fraudulent activities are continuing.

said the objectives of raising standards and ease of doing go hand in hand.

"But when standards are coming down or are not high, then having very high standards of ease of doing is a problem. So they go hand in hand and are positively co-related.

"So, the effort is on corporate governance, raising the standards and along with it promoting ease of doing business," he told in an interview.

There is a need as well as room for lot of improvement in corporate governance in the country, Srinivas said.

Another key initiative is de-criminalisation of corporate offences, which are essentially technical or procedural in nature, under the companies The move will help declog special courts as well as the National Company Tribunal (NCLT).

In this regard, a bill to replace an ordinance as well as amend the Companies Act, 2013 was introduced in the Lok Sabha this month.

"I think this is a big step and I think if it works well, we should be able to see more and more sections coming into penalty regime vis-a-vis the fine and imprisonment kind of regime. They become civil offences rather than criminal offences or a combination of both civil and criminal offences," the said.

An platform, which would be "non-discretionary" will be put in place soon.

"The idea is that you should have more and more interface with the system rather than having to interact with any regulator. The outcome should be predictable and time-bound. You should make it non-discretionary and transparent," he noted.

In other significant developments, the ministry has set up the (NFRA), pushed ahead with electronic Know Your Customer (KYC) requirement for all directors, decided on dematerialisation of securities of unlisted public companies and rolled out various initiatives.

In the IL&FS matter, the ministry invoked a rarely-used provision to supersede the group's board and a probe by the (SFIO) is progressing.

This followed the ministry taking strict action, including ordering SFIO probe into the nearly Rs 14,000 crore scam at

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sun, December 30 2018. 17:05 IST