India: Indian Companies Act, 2013 - A New Beginning!

Last Updated: 23 October 2013
Article by Hemant Goyal and Hemant Goyal

The new Companies Act (hereinafter referred as CA2013) is replacing old Companies Act, 1956 (hereinafter referred as CA1956). The CA2013 makes comprehensive provisions to govern all listed and unlisted companies in the country. The CA2013 is partially made effective w.e.f. 12th September, 2013, by way of implementing 98 Sections and repealing the relevant sections corresponded with CA1956. Some of the Salient features of the CA2013 are as under:

  1. Democracy of Shareholders: The CA2013 has introduced new concept of class action suits with a view of making shareholders and other stakeholders, more informed and knowledgeable about their rights.
  2. Supremacy of Shareholders: The CA2013 focused and provide major aspect on approvals from shareholders on various significant transactions. The Government has rightly reduced the need for the companies to seek approvals to managerial remuneration and the shareholders have been vested with the power to sanction the limit.
  3. Strengthening Women Contributions through Board Room:The CA2013 stipulates appointment of at least one woman Director on the Board of the prescribed class of Companies so as to widen the talent pool enabling big Corporates to benefit from diversified backgrounds with different viewpoints.
  4. Corporate Social Responsibility: The CA2013 stipulates certain class of Companies to spend a certain amount of money every year on activities/initiatives reflecting Corporate Social Responsibility.  There may be difficulties in implementing in the initial years but this measure would help in improving the Under-privileged & backward sections of Society and the Corporate would in fact gain in terms of their reputation and image in the Society.
  5. National Company Law Tribunal: The CA2013 introduced National Company Law Tribunal and the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal to replace the Company Law Board and Board for Industrial and Financial Reconstruction. They would relieve the Courts of their burden while simultaneously providing specialized justice.
  6. Fast Track Mergers: The CA2013 proposes a fast track and simplified procedure for mergers and amalgamations of certain class of companies such as holding and subsidiary, and small companies after obtaining approval of the Indian government.
  7. Cross Border Mergers:The CA2013 permits cross border mergers, both ways; a foreign company merging with an India Company and vice versa but with prior permission of RBI.
  8. Prohibition on forward dealings and insider trading: The CA2013 prohibits directors and key managerial personnel from purchasing call and put options of shares of the company, its holding company and its subsidiary and associate companies as if such person is reasonably expected to have access to price-sensitive information (being information which, if published, is likely to affect the price of the company's securities).  Earlier these provisions were contained in regulations framed by SEBI, as the capital market regulator. Now, it has also been informed that SEBI is expected to discuss changes in certain norms for listed firms so as to make them in line with the rules in the new Act.
  9. Increase in number of Shareholders: The CA 2013 increased the number of maximum shareholders in a private company from 50 to 200.
  10. Limit on Maximum Partners: The maximum number of persons/partners in any association/partnership may be upto such number as may be prescribed but not exceeding one hundred. This restriction will not apply to an association or partnership, constituted by professionals like lawyer, chartered accountants, company secretaries, etc. who are governed by their special laws. Under the CA1956, there was a limit of maximum 20 persons/partners and there was no exemption granted to the professionals.
  11. One Person Company: The CA2013 provides new form of private company, i.e., one person company is introduced that may have only one director and one shareholder. The CA1956 requires minimum two shareholders and two directors in case of a private company.
  12. Entrenchment in Articles of Association: The CA2013 provides for entrenchment of articles of association have been introduced.
  13. Electronic Mode: The CA2013 proposed E-Governance for various company processes like maintenance and inspection of documents in electronic form, option of keeping of books of accounts in electronic form, financial statements to be placed on company's website, etc.
  14. Restriction on Composition: Every company shall have at least one director who has stayed in India for a total period of not less than 182 (one hundred and eighty two) days in the previous calendar year.
  15. Independent Directors: The CA2013 provides that all listed companies should have at least one-third of the Board as independent directors. Such other class or classes of public companies as may be prescribed by the Central Government shall also be required to appoint independent directors. No independent director shall hold office for more than two consecutive terms of five years.
  16. Serving Notice of Board Meeting: The CA2013 requires at least seven days' notice to call a board meeting. The notice may be sent by electronic means to every director at his address registered with the company. The CA1956 did not prescribe any notice period to call the board meeting of a company.
  17. Duties of Director defined: Under the CA1956, a director had fiduciary duties towards a company. However, the CA2013 has NOW defined the duties of a director.
  18. Liability on Directors and Officers: The CA2013 does not restrict an Indian company from indemnifying its directors and officers like the CA1956.
  19. Rotation of Auditors: The CA2013 provides for rotation of auditors and audit firms in case of publicly traded companies.
  20. Auditors performing Non-Audit Services: The CA2013 prohibits Auditors from performing non-audit services to the company where they are auditor to ensure independence and accountability of auditor.  
  21. Financial Year: Every company's financial year will be the period ending on 31 March every year.
  22. Rehabilitation and Liquidation Process: The entire rehabilitation and liquidation process of the companies in financial crisis has been made time bound under CA2013.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

In association with
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.