CMA, UK, Fines Meta Second Time in Six Months

Meta has been fined £1.5 Million, by CMA, for breaching the Initial Enforcement Order (IEO) again , for not informing CMA about the resignation of 3 key employees and the reallocation of their roles, which Meta was required under the IEO. Meta was fined first time, for £50 Million, for breach of IEO in October, after it significantly limited the scope of compliance reports.

IEOs are issued by CMA, UK, at the start of the investigation into a completed merger, to ensure the companies involved in the merger continue to compete with each other as they would have before the deal took place.

State Funded Madrassa can’t Impart Religious Instructions: Gauhati HC

The enactment of the Assam Repealing Act, 2020, which repealed Assam Madrassa Education (Provincialization) Act, 1995 and the Assam Madrassa Education (Provincialization of Services of Employees and Re-Organisation of Madrassa Educational Institutions) Act, 2018, by the Assam Government was upheld by Gauhati HC in a writ petition challenging its validity.

The HC held that madrasas ceased to be minority institutions once they were provincialised, and stated “The Madrasas in question, which are “wholly maintained out of State funds”, cannot impart religious instructions in terms of the mandate of Article 28(1) of the Constitution of India.”

Pharma Companies fined £35 Million by CMA

Competitions and Markets Authority (‘CMA’) has imposed a combined fine of £35 million on 5 pharmaceutical companies, for limiting the supply of ‘Prochlorperazine’, an anti-nausea drug, used by the National Health Service (NHS). According to CMA, under the arrangement only one company was appointed as the distributor of the drug by the manufacturer of the drug and others were paid a share from its profit. Due to this arrangement, the price of Prochlorperazine surged from £6.49 to £51.68 per pack of 50 tablets between 2013 and 2017.

SC Upholds Rs. 1788 Crores Penalty by CCI on Tyre Manufacturers

The SC dismissed the SLP, filed by 5 tyre manufactures, against Rs. 1788 Crores penalty order of CCI, kept in sealed cover till now.

The CCI had penalised the 5 tyre manufacturers and Automotive Tyre Manufacturers Association (‘ATMA’) for cartelisation by acting in concert to increase the prices of cross ply/bias tyres variants sold by each of them in the replacement market and to limit and control production and supply in the said market.

The proposed US Antitrust Law, Open App Market Bill, gets a massive 84% nod from App Developers: CAF Poll

A poll done by Coalition for App Fairness (‘CAF’), showed 84% support for the proposed Open App Market Bill, going to be considered by the Senate Committee on Judiciary – the next step towards becoming law. It comes in the wake of Apple being forced to allow app developers to choose third-party platforms in South Korea and the Netherlands. The proposed law, introduced in last August, will have a still greater impact.

SC Denies Compensation for Misrepresentation in Goods & Services under MRTPC Act, 1969.

The gaps between MRTPC Act,1969 before its repeal in 2009, continue to come to the fore in different matters. An appellant’s claim, for Unfair Trade Practice because of misrepresentation in delay of handing over the possession of the apartment and levying arbitrary extra charges was not allowed.“Section 12-B of MRTP Act empowers the Commission to grant compensation only when any loss or damage is caused to a consumer as a result of a monopolistic, restrictive or unfair trade practice.”, said SC.

At the time of repeal, the Ministry of Consumer Affairs was conscious that the part relating to competition was rightly included to Competition Act, 2002, but the domain relating to ‘unfair trade practices’ was left uncovered. Whether the Government is besieged of the matter and attempting to plug these gaps or the situation remains the same as it was in 2009 is not yet known.

EU Court throws out a 1.2 $ billion Antitrust fine against Intel.

The General Court of EU annulled a much-hyped, $1.2 billion fine of EC against Intel. This was a matter, wherein in 2009, Intel was accused of Abuse of Dominance because of loyalty rebates to PC makers for squeezing out its rival, Advanced Micro Devices Inc (AMD). Commenting on the analysis by the EC, the EU Court observed, “The Commission’s analysis is incomplete and does not make it possible to establish to the requisite legal standard that the rebates at issue were capable of having, or likely to have, anticompetitive effects.”