30 May 2010

Path-breaking legislations in the vicinity

It has been sometime since we last updated our readers on the pending legislations. Meanwhile there have been a number of path-breaking legislations which have been introduced in the Parliament and given the fact that they come at a critical time when the country is slowly pursuing the mandate towards attaining the status of a developed nation, these in our view definitely carry the intent further. 

The NATIONAL ROAD SAFETY AND TRAFFIC MANAGEMENT BOARD BILL, 2010 which seeks "to provide for the establishment of the National Road Safety and Traffic Management Board for the purpose of orderly development, regulation, promotion and optimisation of modern and effective road safety and traffic management system and practices in relation to the national highways and improved safety standards in highway design, construction, operation and regulate high standards in production and maintenance of mechanically propelled vehicles and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto." 

The EDUCATIONAL TRIBUNALS BILL, 2010 which seeks "to provide for the establishment of Educational Tribunals for effective and expeditious 
adjudication of disputes involving teachers and other employees of higher educational institutions and other stake holders (including students, universities, institutions and statutory regulatory authorities) and to adjudicate penalties for indulging in unfair practices in higher education and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto."

ENTRY AND OPERATIONS) BILL, 2010 which seeks "to regulate entry and operation of foreign educational institutions imparting or intending to impart higher education (including technical education and medical education and award of degree, diploma and equivalent qualifications by such institutions) and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto." As the name suggests, the proposed law would regulate the entry and operations of foreign educational institutions in India in as much as it provides that "no foreign educational institution shall admit any person as a student, or collect any fee from such person or its students in India for any course of study leading to the award of a degree or a diploma, by whatever name called, unless such institution has been notified by the Central Government as a foreign education provider". 

The NATIONAL ACCREDITATION REGULATORY AUTHORITY FOR HIGHER EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS BILL, 2010 which seeks "to make provisions for assessment of academic quality of higher educational institutions, programmes conducted therein and their infrastructure through mandatory accreditation by independent accreditation agencies and to establish a statutory Authority for the said purpose and to provide for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto". The proposed law seeks to establish the 'National Accreditation Regulatory Authority for Higher Educational Institutions' and inter alia make accreditation to be mandatory for every higher educational institution and every programme conducted therein.

The PROHIBITION OF UNFAIR PRACTICES IN TECHNICAL EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS, MEDICAL EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS AND UNIVERSITIES BILL, 2010 which seeks "to provide for the prohibition of certain unfair practices in technical educational institutions, medical educational institutions and universities and to protect interests of students admitted or seeking admission therein and to provide for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto". The proposed law inter alia seeks to regulate / prohibit "capitation fees"; "accepting admission fee and other fees and charges without receipt"; "admission without specified admission tests or inter se merit for selection of students"; "advertisements not based on facts or misleading", etc.

Then we have the Copyright (Amendment) Bill, 2010 which seeks to update the Copyright law of India in line with the international standards, especially in tune with the WIPO Copyright Treaty (WCT) and the WIPO Performances and Phonographs Treaty (WPPT) [both instituted under the aegis of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO)]; provide for 'performers rights' and 'moral rights of authors' at par with the international best practices; and a number of other changes to this effect.

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