Report on National Workshop on Competition Policy & Law, 7th February, 2015, Pune
CIRC is a premier research and capacity building institute with a focus on competition law and economic regulation. It has been spreading awareness and providing training on competition law and policy since its inception. In pursuance of this objective, CIRC in association with Bharati Vidyapeeth University, New Law College, Pune organised a one day National Workshop on Competition Policy & Law in Pune on 7th February, 2015. The workshop saw participation of about 350 participants including students, lawyers and teachers. Most of the participants were students. The course was designed to give participants an overview of the Competition Law in India with related case studies to understand the practical implications of the law in practice. The faculty comprised of the representatives from the CUTS Institute for Regulation & Competition (CIRC) and experts from the premier law firms of the country.
The Dean of the college Prof (Dr.) Mukund Sarda and other senior faculty were also present and welcomed the experts. In his welcome speech, while highlighting the importance of competition law, Prof Sarda thanked CIRC for collaborating to conduct the workshop on such a contemporary area of law for the benefit of the students. There were in all four sessions.The first session introduced the participants to the basics of Competition Law and Policy with emphasis on importance and objectives of the Competition Law. Mr Sharma explained the importance of understanding the history, fundamentals, objectives, evolution and the intent of drafting such law by the legislature in India. Highlighting the fact that MRTP Act was having only recommendatory powers, he laid down the differences between MRTP Act and Competition Act, 2002. He touched upon the various facets of CCI powers i.e. adjudicatory, regulatory, inquisitory and advisory while discussing cases like Brahm Dutt V. U.O.I and CCI v. SAIL decided by Supreme Court of India. Further, he encouraged the students to pursue courses on competition law, as it can give them first mover advantage.
Session 2: Speech by Honourable Justice Deepak Verma (Former Judge Supreme Court of India)
Justice Verma while discussing about the legal profession in general shared very useful insights for the students from his rich experience of working in the highest echelons of Indian judiciary. He talked about legal ethics and traits of lawyers which are crucial in building a more responsible and competitive legal fraternity. Further, he talked about the evolution of competition law in India and its importance for the Indian economy. A book by renowned author Mr K.D.Gaur was also unveiled at the end of the speech by Justice Verma.
Session 3: Anticompetitive Agreements (Ms. Soumya Hariharan, Senior Associate, Amarchand Mangaldas)
Ms. Hariharan commenced the session with a presentation on ‘Regulation of AntiCompetitive Agreements’ and their interpretation and implementation under the Competition Act 2002. Participants were introduced to various provisions under the Act dealing with anti-competitive agreements. Two types of agreements i.e. horizontal and vertical agreements and their further classification were discussed in detail with examples and cases. Thereafter the ‘Per – Se’ and ‘Rule of Reason’ approaches to analyzing the anti-competitive effects of business practices, as well as the process of determinability of violation under the different approaches, were discussed. Various examples and cases were discussed to lucidly explain as to when business practices can have anticompetitive outcomes which will fall foul of competition law.