In an endeavor to simplify and streamline the process for incorporation of companies, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs ("MCA") introduced the formation of the Central Registration Centre ("CRC") by issuing a notification on January 22, 2016 ("CRC Notification"). The CRC Notification is effective from January 26, 2016. The CRC will have territorial jurisdiction all over India, and will have duties, which would include, discharging/carrying out the processing and disposing of applications, for reservation of names, under the provisions of the Companies Act, 2013 ("Companies Act").

The Register of Companies ("ROC"), Delhi will be exercising administrative control over the CRC until a separate Registrar is appointed for the same. The CRC will process applications for reservation of names made under the revised e-Form No. INC -1, however processing and approval of names proposed in e-Form No. INC-29 will be done by the ROCs having respective jurisdiction over incorporation of companies under the Companies Act. Accordingly, the MCA also amended the Companies (Incorporation) Rules, 2014, by issuing a notification on January 22, 2016 ("Incorporation Notification"). The salient features of the Incorporation Notification are summarised below:

1. The proposed name sent for approval will no longer be required to be in consonance with or indicative of the primary objects of the company as set out in the memorandum of association. Consequently, on change of activities carried out by a company, the company will not be required to change its name to be in line with its altered activities;

2. Abbreviated or vague names will no longer be considered undesirable by the ROC;

3. Restrictions against names that are likely to produce a misleading impression regarding the scope or scale of the applicant company's activities which could be beyond the resources at the company's disposal have been removed;

4. Applications for reservation of names made in Form No. INC-1 will be approved/rejected by the Registrar of the CRC;

5. Applicants making applications in e-Form No. INC-29 will be given 3 (three) opportunities to correct/remove defects and complete forms as per the requirements of the concerned ROC, provided that the re-submission of documents will not exceed a total period of 30 (thirty) days.

The establishment of the CRC will reduce the burden on ROCs handling voluminous applications for incorporation of companies. Further, relaxations in relation to various restrictions on name of the company which were earlier considered undesirable will ease the process of incorporation pf companies.

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