The Competition Commission of India's attempts to restrict
Government control of the market represent a streamlining of
India's competition jurisprudence along the lines of
"Capitalism, or more precisely, the free market system,
is the most effective way to organise production and distribution
that human beings have found ... healthy and competitive financial
markets are an extraordinarily effective tool in spreading
opportunity and fighting poverty. ...Without vibrant, innovative
financial markets, economies would ossify and
Raghuram Rajan's introduction to his much-vaunted book is
what developed economies live and swear by.
That being said, India is not a capitalist economy. We are still
bound to an extent by socialistic concerns for the deprived and
marginalised sections of the market. Even though we are quarter of
a century into liberalisation, Govt. protection is nevertheless
considered necessary, especially for smaller businesses.
On one hand, we aim to maximise the foreign investment through
increased limits of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI); on the other
hand we are still worried how the "Mom-and-Pop" stores
shall survive when Wal-Mart opens in every nook and corner of the
country. In doing so, we are willing to over-look the obvious
efficiencies and assured conveniences that such Multi-national
brands would bring to the market.
The socialistic concerns lead to adoption of measures which aim
to "promote" the smaller or domestic businesses by
restricting/limiting competition in the market, even if such
"promotion" is at the expense of quality or efficiencies
which increased competition would introduce in the market.
All this leads us to the inevitable question: To what extent
Govt. intervention should be allowed to dictate the play of market
forces in the free-market economy? For instance, is it really
maximising consumer benefit to ask the Govt. PSUs to source
one-fifth of their requirements from MSMEs? Are we sacrificing the
greater good by focussing on the protection of the few?
The Legal Metrology Act, 2009 was passed by the Indian Parliament in order to repeal and replace The Standards of Weights and Measures Act, 1976 and the Standards of Weights and Measures (Enforcement) Act, 1985.
In the wake of liberalization and privatization that was triggered in India in early nineties, a realization gathered momentum that the existing Monopolistic and Restrictive Trade Practices Act, 1969 was not equipped adequately enough to tackle the competition aspect of the Indian economy.
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