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DCA-Plan panel turf war delaying Competition Policy road map
December, 26th 2006

The tug-of-war between the department of company affairs (DCA) and the Planning Commission is threatening to delay the much-awaited National Competition Policy. In fact, the two agencies are now engaged in a turf war on who will prepare the policy statement and who will manage it.

Following the governments efforts to draft a National Competition Policy, the DCA, along with the Competition Commission of India (CCI), took the initiative and set up an advisory committee under the chairmanship of Vijay Kelkar. On its part, the Planning Commission, after the Eleventh Plan approach paper was published, decided to establish a working group, chaired by CCI member Vinod Dhall, to finalise the governments competition policy. Although the working group had a target date of October 31, it has not been able to meet it due to the turf war.

Interestingly, the study groups of the DCA and the Planning Commission have several common members including Pronab Sen, principal adviser of the Planning Commission; Pallavi Shroff of the corporate law firm Amarchand Mangaldas; Pradeep S Mehta, secretary general of the research and advocacy group: CUTS International; Jitesh Khosla, joint secretary at the ministry of company affairs; Mala Banerjee, president of Federation of Consumer Association West Bengal and Vinod Dhall.

Meanwhile, the DCA dragged its feet to allow CCI to share its outputwhich was being prepared by the latter with the input of the Planning Commissions working group.

Ironically, the complications have also resulted in delaying the completion of CCIs report on the topic.

A Planning Commission official, however, said, Work is at an advanced stage. The working group meeting has been convened to discuss the draft. The Planning Commission working group is scheduled to meet on January 5, 2007.

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