Bankruptcy bill tabled in Lok Sabha

New Delhi, Dec 21 (IANS) Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday tabled in the Lok Sabha the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Bill, 2015, proposing to enact a single bankruptcy code and setting deadlines for processing insolvency cases.

Jaitley had announced this on Saturday, saying the government intends to bring important legislative measures on structural reforms during the remaining three days left of parliament’s winter session, notwithstanding the setback on the GST Bill.

The proposed law aims to reduce delays in resolution of insolvency cases and improve recoveries of amount lent to companies. The draft bill has proposed a timeline of 180 days, extendable by another 90 days, to resolve cases of bankruptcy.

The new bankruptcy code will help India in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business ranking. India is currently ranked at 136 on this count in the 189-country ranking.

The current set of competing codes on the matter often results in the bankruptcy process dragging on for years, inflating costs for the parties concerned. Resolving a bankruptcy case can take on an average over 4 years in India.

Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das tweeted on Sunday that the bankruptcy code would the biggest reform proposal after the Goods and Services Tax (GST) bill.

The bill is a money bill, and Rajya Sabha will have a limited role in its passing, unlike the Goods and Services Tax Bill that has stalled because the ruling NDA does not have the numbers in the upper house.

The Bankruptcy bill provides for creation of an Insolvency and Bankruptcy Fund and an Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India to regulate insolvency professional, agencies and information utilities.

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