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Wednesday, Dec 18, 2002

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`Cos Bill aims at reviving sick units'

Our Bureau

NEW DELHI, Dec. 17

PARLIAMENT on Tuesday approved the Companies (Amendment) Bill, 2002. The Rajya Sabha gave its nod to the Bill, which aims at integrating the procedure relating to restructuring and winding up of companies.

It proposes to put in place the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) and the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) so as to take over the functions being hitherto performed by the Company Law Board (CLB), the Board for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction (BIFR) and the Appellate Authority for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction as well as by the high courts and the local courts in winding up of companies.

The Finance Minister, Mr Jaswant Singh, said that the Bill was aimed at reviving sick industries and not winding them up. A Rehabilitation and Revival Fund would also be created, besides setting up of the NCLT, he said. The Bill has incorporated most of the recommendations of the Department Related Parliamentary Standing Committee.

He assured the Rajya Sabha that no employee of BIFR and CLB would be retrenched when these were disbanded and merged into NCLT. ``We will ensure that all those persons in the existing organisations are absorbed to the maximum extent possible. Nobody will lose their job'', he said.

He further said that if all of them were not being absorbed in the Tribunal, they would be absorbed elsewhere in the Department. The Tribunal would have 63 members and 25 benches. The Rajya Sabha also returned The Companies (Second Amendment) Bill, 2002, enabling co-operative institutions to voluntarily transform themselves into companies to compete with other enterprises on a competitive footing.

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