Context: The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) upheld the ₹1,337-crore penalty imposed on Google by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) saying that the order did not violate the principles of natural justice.
Background: CCI imposed this fine on the charge that Google has misused its dominant position in the Android ecosystem showing the anti-competitive tendencies.
About the order:
However, NCLAT has restricted some directives of CCI where it called for allowing third party app stores on google play store. Google is also allowed by NCLAT to restrict uninstallation of its pre-installed apps.
About the NCLAT:
- National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) was constituted under Section 410 of the Companies Act, 2013 for hearing appeals against the orders of National Company Law Tribunal(s) (NCLT), with effect from 1st June, 2016.
- NCLAT is also the Appellate Tribunal for hearing appeals against the orders passed by NCLT(s) under Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 (IBC), Competition Commission of India (CCI), and National Financial Reporting Authority.
- Former judge of the Supreme Court, is the current chairperson of the tribunal.
- Judgement given by the tribunal can be challenged in the supreme court on a point of law. For example, in the ArcelorMittal case, SC set aside the judgement of the tribunal.
About Competition Commission of India:
- It is a statutory body created under the Competition Commission Act 2002 and its amendment in 2007. The Act prohibits anti-competitive agreements, abuse of dominant position by enterprises and regulates combinations (acquisition, acquiring of control and M&A), which causes or likely to cause an appreciable adverse effect on competition within India.
- CCI consists of a Chairperson and 6 Members appointed by the Central Government.
- It is the duty of the Commission to eliminate practices having adverse effects on competition, promote and sustain competition, protect the interests of consumers and ensure freedom of trade in the markets of India.
- It ensures that two merging entities do not overtake the market. The Act prohibits abuse of dominant position by enterprises and regulates combinations (acquisition, acquiring of control and Merger and acquisition).
- The Commission is also required to give opinion on competition issues on a reference received from a statutory authority established under any law and to undertake competition advocacy, create public awareness and impart training on competition issues.
- It functions under the Ministry of Corporate Affairs.
- It replaced the Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Commission which was created under the Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Act.