Combination Control: Strengthening the Regulatory Framework of Competition Law in India?
Tanaya Sanyal & Sohini Chatterjee
Volume 5 Issue 3 (2012)
Combination control is a relatively new concept in Indian competition law. Although its roots can be traced to India’s erstwhile antitrust legislation, the Monopolies and Restrictive Trade Practices Act, a sophisticated form of combination control was put into force only in 2011. A study of its working since enforcement offers interesting results. In this exercise, the drafting history of the legislation provides useful insights, especially into the objectives propelling the introduction of this system. Post enforcement, sincere efforts are in place to make the mechanism more appealing to the corporate players. However, in an overzealous bid to review more transactions, the system is often accused of regulatory overreach. Through the course of this paper, we shall attempt to understand the combination regulation mechanism operating in India, with special focus on specific provisions of the Competition Act, 2002 and Combination Regulations, 2011 in their recently amended form. We shall investigate the viability of the mechanism and demarcate its contributions from its shortcomings in the regulatory landscape of Indian competition law. Our attempt shall be guided by a principle consideration, that of identifying potential drawbacks holding up the working of the nascent combination control mechanism in India.