Esports in India
Experts CornerSiddharth Batra

   

Introduction

Electronic sports (esports) have emerged globally during the last two decades and are evolving at an exponential pace in India. Its domain remains a grey area due to lack of awareness amongst the general public. Esports is a relatively new field, though popular among the younger population, but the general public is still unaware about it. In India, there is no specific set of regulations that govern esports or any other aspect related to it. The Government of India is yet to promulgate an enactment in order to govern the same, meaning thereby it remains fairly unregulated except for some State regulations.

In a press statement dated 4-2-2021, the Ministry of Youth and Affairs acknowledged the emergence of esports and also stated that esports are very different from iGaming and gambling2. The Prime Minister of India has also acknowledged the growth of the gaming sector while addressing the country with respect to the impact of Union Budget for 2022-20233. This indicates that esports are being recognised as an emerging field and requires Parliament to ponder over a legislation that will govern this specific field. The Data Privacy Bill is pending consideration before Justice B.N. Srikrishna Committee in the Parliament which will also have a direct impact on any legislation on esports. It is not just that we do not have legislation to govern esports, but the Ministry of Sports is yet to recognise a federation as per the sports code. In order to dwell upon the same, we need to shed some light on the global federations.

What is esports?

Esports are essentially electronic sports in which a large number of players with the necessary skill sets compete against each other on an online platform.4 It mostly consists of teams/individuals participating in online tournaments to achieve the highest levels/rankings.5 Esports are digitally assisted activities with varying degree of materiality, virtual environment, and technical involvement. Many sportsmen have opposing viewpoints because it does not need physical labour6. Nonetheless, the amount of mental effort required makes it as demanding as any other sport.

Esports are very different from conventional sports as one is played on the ground and the other is played virtually. Therefore, the mode of conduct is very different. As to the way a lawyer sitting anywhere in the country can attend a matter in the Supreme Court virtually, similarly, players in different States can participate in an event that is taking place in another part of the country or anywhere in the world. Therefore, the contours of esports are different from those of any conventional sport. India talks about one nation, one tax. Similarly, the legislation governing esports cannot be limited at the State level.

In conventional sports, it is the State level association and the State talent that has been nurtured in the homeland of the State. However, contours are different in esports, particularly in relation to a world opening up for the metaverse.

At the international level, federations have been formed with the goal of creating platforms for athletes to promote esports and to organise events. There are several such federations in India as well, however, none of them are currently recognised by the Ministry of Youth and Affairs.

Where will esports be placed under the Constitution?

Articles 2457 and 2468 of the Constitution of India, read with Schedule VII, bifurcate the subject-matter upon which the Union and the State can make laws. It implies that the Union's and the State's powers are distributed, and if there is an element that requires attention from both the Union and the State, it is subject to the concurrent list.

The entries from Schedule VII which are relevant and required for the purpose of the present discussion are as follows:

“List I

10. Foreign affairs; all matters which bring the Union into relation with any foreign country.

13. Participation in international conferences, associations and other bodies and implementing of decisions made thereat.

97. Any other matter not enumerated in List II or List III including any tax not mentioned in either of those lists.

List II

33. Theatres and dramatic performances; cinemas subject to the provisions of Entry 60 of List I; sports, entertainments and amusements.”

List I covers subject-matter upon which only the Union can frame laws.

List II covers the subject-matter upon which only a State can frame laws.

Lastly, there is a Concurrent List under which both the Parliament and State authorities can formulate laws and in case of any repugnancy, the law framed by the centre shall prevail.

Sports are currently a State subject in India9, but esports, given the band with it covers, cannot be legislated by one State alone. This leads us to the question as to whether esports can be regulated individually by separate States or we require a legislation at a national level for governing the same. In other words, either sports being a State subject as per Schedule VII, will have to be shifted to the Concurrent List to enable a national legislation on it or assuming competence on residuary subjects it shall form a part of List I.

However, Entries 10 and 13 of List I, Schedule VII discuss foreign affairs and participation in various events10. Its main objective is to vest the Union with the authority to regulate any event that takes place on a national or international scale. The basic rationale behind it is that the participants competing represent the country and not individual States.

If the notion that esports is not a segment of sport is accepted in view of the Schedule VII, then according to Entry 97 of List I, it can also fall under the ambit of List I, as anything that is not a subject of List II or List III automatically falls under the ambit of List I which is directly the subject-matter of the Union.

The possibility of adding “sports” to the Concurrent List has been discussed at various occasions. However, no steps have been taken in that direction. According to the Ministry of Youth and Affairs, no proposal is pending in this regard11.

So, if sports are shifted to List III, esports should also fall under List III as esports is a category of sports12. However, its scope is much broader than sports because, firstly, access to esports is much simpler and secondly, esports is linked to technology, therefore Central Government's involvement is necessary to safeguard people's interests from cybercrime. Data protection laws will play a big role while coming up with a legislation to regulate esports in India. As a result, esports should be included to the Union List since monitoring and assessment are necessary at all levels.

Present legislations and esports

At present, India is limited only to the following set of legislations related to esports; the Public Gambling Act, 186713 (Gambling Act) and the Prize Competitions Act, 1955. As per Section 12 of the Gambling Act, its provisions are not applicable to games which require skill. Therefore, Gambling Act cannot be stretched to a point where it touches esports as it is played virtually and requires a skill set. Evidently, esports is not covered under the Gambling Act and demands a separate legislative framework.

Since sports is a State subject, several State Legislatures have enacted legislations to regulate esports in their respective States. The Sikkim Online Gaming (Regulation) Act, 2008 (Sikkim Act) is one such example. It was enacted with the goal of regulating internet gaming and Tax on such activities. This statute also defines “online gaming” and “sports gaming”. It addresses various aspects related to online gaming such as mandating the licensing of online games, prescribing offences related to online gaming, defining punishment and so on.

The definition of “online gaming” and “sports gaming” are reproduced below:

2. Definitions:

(k) “Online gaming” means any gaming, where any player enters or may enter the game or takes or may take any step in the game or acquires or may acquire or may acquire a chance in any lottery, by means of a telecommunication device including the negotiating or receiving of any bet by means of a telecommunication device;

(p) “Sports gaming” means games involving the prediction or the results of sporting events and placing a bet on the outcome, in pad or in whole, or such sporting event;

Another notable example is the Nagaland Prohibition of Gambling and Promotion and Regulation of Online Games of Skill Act, 2015 (Nagaland Act), which was enacted to outlaw gambling and promote online gaming within Nagaland's territorial jurisdiction. The Act also places an obligation with respect to licensing.

The Nagaland Act defines “game of skills” as

2. Definitions:

(3) “Games of skill” shall include all such games where there is preponderance of skill over chance, including where the skill relates to strategising the manner of placing wagers or placing bets or where the skill lies in team selection or selection of virtual stocks based on analyses or where the skill relates to the manner in which the moves are made, whether through deployment of physical or mental skill and acumen.

The Nagaland Act also includes “virtual sports” under the definition of “games of skills”.

There is a visible disparity across various State legislations on the aspect of sports activities, as it falls under List II. For example, States including Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Odisha, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Telangana have prohibited internet poker, others have no such prohibition. This demonstrates the enormous difference between State Legislatures on the aspect of governing sports activities and also indicate the need to establish consistency through a parliamentary legislation. Interestingly, none of the State legislations have yet defined esports, a completely distinct concept demanding a separate legislative framework.

Looking at current judicial trends, the Supreme Court of India in the landmark case of K.R. Lakshmanan v. State of T.N.14, provided a strict bifurcation between the “game of skills” and “game of chances”. Relying on such distinction in Varun Gumber v. UT of Chandigarh15, organised internet gaming tournaments, fantasy sports, and so on have all been characterised as “games of skill” by the Punjab and Haryana High Court. Further, it was ruled that fantasy sports, such as horse racing require skills and a sense of judgment in order to make the necessary moves. The High Court of Bombay in Gurdeep Singh Sachar v. Union of India16 also had a similar view, observing that fantasy gaming is not equivalent to gambling activities.

In 2018, an attempt towards consolidating esports related issues was addressed by Member of Parliament, Mr Shashi Tharoor by introducing a private Bill —”the Online Gaming and Prevention of Fraud Bill, 2018″. The objective of the Bill was “to establish an effective regime to maintain the integrity of sports in India by preventing and penalising sports fraud, regulation of online sports gaming and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto”. However, the Bill is currently being debated in Parliament.17

Being a subject-matter of List II, few States have enacted laws to prevent gambling and promote online gaming but, as mentioned earlier, even they have not touched upon esports. Another pertinent issue is that of uniformity — only if a rigid set of laws are passed by the Parliament, can we expect the complications related to esports to get subdued. Promulgation of legislation will not only provide legitimacy to this industry but will also serve twin purposes of economic growth and data protection.

Comparative law

The laws connected to esports are addressed distinctly in the United States of America,18 as different aspects of it impact different segments of law. Gambling activities are lawful in the US if conducted within the jurisdiction where gambling is officially permitted or authorised by the gaming commission. No specific legislation however exists even in the US, placing India and the US at an equal footing in the matter of esports regulation.

Under the system prevailing in the United Kingdom,19 there is no specific set of regulations that solely govern esports.

Similar to position in the US, the subject-matter related to esports is bifurcated into different segments of law. While gaming and related aspects are covered under the Gambling Act, 2005 (Section 6), protection of data is covered under the Data Protection Act, 2018.

Many other countries like Japan, South Africa do not have a defined framework for regulation of esports and are still exploring the dynamics of it.

Conclusion

Esports, as stated at the outset, is a relatively new notion that is still evolving throughout the world. There are several federations striving to make it a worldwide phenomenon. In India, there are no regulations to govern esports. However, as stated earlier, the Ministry of Youth and Sports has acknowledged the rise of this form of sport.

If esports is listed in List II, each State will have a separate set of regulation which may result in lack of uniformity. It is therefore advisable that it is included in either List I or List III, and if it is included in List III, every State Government develop their own framework based on the national legislation. It is pertinent to add that while doing so, the State Government must not enact anything that fall repugnant to the central legislation. Recently, the Supreme Court struck down the West Bengal Housing Industry Regulation Act (WB-HIRA), 2017 in Forum for People’s Collective Efforts v. State of W.B.,20 observing that, “RERA being an exhaustive code regulating the contractual relationships between promoters and buyers in the real estate sector, WB-HIRA entrenches on an occupied field and is hence repugnant and void under Article 254(2) of the Constitution.”

* * *


† Advocate-on-record, Supreme Court of India. Author can be reached at <siddharth.batra@satramdass.com>.

†† Associate, Satramdass B & Co., Delhi, Author can be reached at <chinmay.dubey@satramdass.com>.

2. Ministry of Youth and Affairs, Gaming and Esports Policy, Question No. 48, answered on 4-2-2021.

3. PM India, PM's address at webinar on positive impact of Union Budget 2022 on the education and skill sector <https://www.pmindia.gov.in/en/news_updates/pms-address-at-webinar-on-positive-impact-of-union-budget-2022-on-the-education-and-skill-sector/?comment=disable&tag_term=pmspeech#>.)

4. Karl Werder, Esport, The International Sports Law Journal (ISLJ).(not found)

5. Karl Werder, Esport, The International Sports Law Journal (ISLJ). (not found)

6. Juho Hamari and Max Sjöblom, “What is eSports and Why do People Watch it?”

7. Constitution of India, Art. 245.

8. Constitution of India, Art. 246.

9. Constitution of India, Sch. VII, List II.

10. Constitution of India, Sch. VII, List II.

11. Ministry of Youth and Affairs, Gaming and E-Sports Policy, Question No. 48, answered on 4-2-2021.

12. Daniel Kane, Brandon D. Spradley, “Recognising Esports as a Sport”, United States Sports Academy <https://thesportjournal.org/article/recognizing-esports-as-a-sport/>

13. Hereinafter referred as “Gambling Act”.

14. (1996) 2 SCC 226.

15. 2017 SCC OnLine P&H 5372.

16. 2019 SCC OnLine Bom 13059 : (2019) 75 GST 258.

17. Rushabh Gurav, “Contemporary Issues in E-Sports Law: ADR, Development and Regulation and the E-Sports Bill” published in International Journal of Law Management and Humanities, Vol 4 Issue 2.

18. Hereinafter referred as the “US”.

19. Hereinafter referred as the “UK”.

20. (2021) 8 SCC 599.

Case BriefsSupreme Court

Supreme Court: While adjudicating the issue as to whether promotion scheme implemented by office memorandum supersedes recruitment regulations, the Division Bench of Dr Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud* and A S Bopanna, JJ., held that regulations made under the statute have the force of law. The Bench expressed,

“The ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015 had precedence over the Office Memorandum dated 29 October 2008 which implemented the DACP Scheme in respect of officers of the Central Health Service under the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.”

Factual Matrix

The Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) had appealed against the judgment of Karnataka High Court, wherein the High Court had Bench rejected ESIC’s petition against the order of Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) directing it to consider promotion of the contesting respondents – to the post of “Associate Professor” under the Dynamic Assured Career Progression (DACP) Scheme as opposed to ESIC’s recruitment regulations. The stand of the appellant was that the recruitment and promotion of its teaching staff are governed by the Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (Medical Teaching Faculty Posts) Recruitment Regulations 2015 not DACP.

The Central Government had issued the DACP Scheme through an Office Memorandum dated 29-10-2008 contemplating promotion as Associate Professor upon completion of two years of service in the post of Assistant Professor as an officer under the Ministry of Health and Family. After two years of service as Assistant Professor on 2 February 2017, the contesting respondents sought promotion under the DACP Scheme and instituted proceedings before the CAT, wherein the Tribunal held that the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015 were not relevant for adjudication of the matter and directed the appellant to consider the contesting respondents for promotion under the DACP Scheme.

Findings of the Tribunal and the High Court

Upholding the findings of CAT, the High Court had dismissed the appeal on the ground that since the contesting respondents were recruited before the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015 came into effect, they would get the benefit of the DACP Scheme. Further, the High Court opined that the DACP Scheme has statutory effect under Section 17 of the ESI Act and ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015 had departed from the DACP Scheme without seeking prior approval of the Central Government.

Observations and Findings

The question before the Bench was with regard to interpretation of Section 17(2)(a) of the ESIC Act, 1948 and the applicability of the Office Memorandum dated 29-10-2008 against the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2008 and the subsequently issued ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015.

The ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2008 were issued by the ESIC in the exercise of its powers under Section 97(1) and Section 17(3) of the ESI Act, 1948. While Recruitment Regulations, 2008 embodied a requirement of four years’ service as Assistant Professor for promotion as an Associate Professor, the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015 stipulated a requirement of five years’ service as Assistant Professor for promotion to the post of Associate Professor. The preamble of the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015 noted that these regulations were to supersede the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2008 and were made with the approval of the Central Government.

Relying on the decision of Constitution Bench in Sukhdev Singh v. Bhagatram Sardar Singh Raghuvanshi, (1975) 1 SCC 421, wherein it was held that in the event of a conflict between an executive instruction, an office memorandum in this case, and statutory regulations – the latter prevail, the Bench held that the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2008 and ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015 had statutory effect by virtue of Section 97(3) of the ESI Act.

Similarly, in Sant Ram Sharma v. State of Rajasthan, (1968) 1 SCR 111, it was held that, “Government cannot amend or supersede statutory rules by administrative instructions, but if the rules are silent on any particular point Government can fill up the gaps and supplement the rules and issue instructions not inconsistent with the rules already framed.”

Therefore, the Bench opined that on the dates when the contesting respondents joined the service of the appellant – 07-02-2014 till 26-06-2016 – their promotions were governed by the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2008 which mandated four years of qualifying service for promotion from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor. However, when the contesting respondents had completed two years of service, they were governed by the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015 which came into effect on 5 July 2015 and mandated five years of qualifying service for promotion from Assistant Professor to Associate Professor. Thus, the Bench held that DACP Scheme facilitating promotion on the completion of two years of service was not applicable to the contesting respondents, when the regulations had a statutory effect that overrides the Office Memorandum dated 29-10-2008 which implemented the DACP Scheme.

On the contention that the advertisements indicated the applicability of the DACP Scheme before the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015 were issued, the Bench held that a subsequent amendment to recruitment regulations would override the conditions prescribed in the advertisement.

Regarding the issue that concession of the Counsel for the appellant before the CAT would preclude the appellant from urging that the DACP Scheme was not applicable to the Teaching Cadre at the ESIC, the Bench remarked,

“While this Court expresses its disapproval at the lack of proper instructions being tendered to the Counsel of the appellant, there can be no estoppel against a statute or regulations having a statutory effect.”

Conclusion

In the backdrop of above, the Bench concluded that the CAT and the High Court failed to notice applicability of the ESIC Recruitment Regulations 2015 to the promotions of the Teaching Cadre in the appellant corporation. The advertisements for recruitment mentioning the DACP Scheme would have no effect since they were in contravention of the applicable recruitment regulations. Accordingly, the appeal was allowed and the impugned judgement and order was set aside.

[The Employees’ State Insurance Corpn. v. Union of India, 2022 SCC OnLine SC 70, decided on 20-01-2022]


*Judgment by: Justice Dr Dhananjaya Y Chandrachud


Appearance by:

For the Appellant: Santhosh Krishnan, Advocate

For the Respondents: Yatindra Singh, Senior Advocate and Anand Sanjay M Nuli, Advocate


Kamini Sharma, Editorial Assistant has put this report together 


Legislation UpdatesStatutes/Bills/Ordinances

The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Bill, 2020 received Presidential Assent on 26-09-2020.

The Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act,  2020

Which Act will this bill amend?

The Essential Commodities Act, 1955.

Which Sections will the said Bill amend?

Section 3 talks about the Powers to control production, supply, distribution, etc., of essential commodities

(1)―If the Central Government is of opinion that it is necessary or expedient so to do for maintaining or increasing supplies of any essential commodity or for securing their equitable distribution and availability at fair prices, [or for securing any essential commodity for the defence of India or the efficient conduct of military operations], it may, by order, provide for regulating or prohibiting the production, supply and distribution thereof and trade and commerce therein.

Insertion of sub-section (1 A) after sub-section (1) in Section 3.

‘(1A) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1),—

(a) the supply of such foodstuffs, including cereals, pulses, potato, onions, edible oilseeds and oils, as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, specify, may be regulated only under extraordinary circumstances which may include war, famine, extraordinary price rise and natural calamity of grave nature;

(b) any action on imposing stock limit shall be based on price rise and an order for regulating stock limit of any agricultural produce may be issued under this Act only if there is—

(i) hundred per cent. increase in the retail price of horticultural produce; or

(ii) fifty per cent. increase in the retail price of non-perishable agricultural foodstuffs, over the price prevailing immediately preceding twelve months, or average retail price of the last five years, whichever is lower:

Provided that such order for regulating stock limit shall not apply to a processor or value chain participant of any agricultural produce if the stock limit of such person does not exceed the overall ceiling of installed capacity of processing, or the demand for export in case of an exporter:

Provided further that nothing contained in this sub-section shall apply to any order, relating to the Public Distribution System or the Targeted Public Distribution System, made by the Government under this Act or under any other law for the time being in force

The gist of the above-introduced amendment:

  • Regulation of Certain food items under extraordinary circumstances.
  • Stock Limit shall be imposed by the Government.

Read the amended Act, here: ACT


Ministry of Law and Justice

Legislation UpdatesRules & Regulations

No. SEBI/LAD-NRO/GN/2019/14.—In exercise of the powers conferred by Section 30 of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 (15 of 1992), the Securities and Exchange Board of India hereby, makes the following regulations to further amend the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Debenture Trustees) Regulations, 1993, namely,–

1. These regulations may be called the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Debenture Trustees) (Amendment) Regulations, 2019.

2. They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the Official Gazette.

3. In the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Debenture Trustees) Regulations, 1993, –
(1) in Regulation 7A,-
(i) after the words “net worth of” and before the words “crore rupees”, the word “two” shall be substituted with the
word “ten”;

(ii) following proviso shall be inserted, namely:-

 “Provided that a debenture trustee holding certificate of registration as on the date of commencement of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Debenture Trustees) (Amendment) Regulations, 2019 shall fulfil the net worth requirements within three years from the date of such commencement.”

(2) in Regulation 15, in sub-regulation (2), after clause (b), following provisos shall be inserted, –

“Provided that a debenture trustee may seek the consent of debenture holders through e-voting, wherever applicable;

Provided further that the requirement to convene a meeting of all debenture holders in case of a default in payment obligation by the issuer, shall not be applicable in case of debentures issued by way of public issue.”


[Notification dt. 07-05-2019]

Securities Exchange Board of India

Legislation UpdatesNotifications

EFIs may participate in commodity derivatives contracts traded in stock exchanges in IFSC subject to the following conditions:-
  •  The participation would be limited to the derivatives contracts in non-agricultural commodities only,
  •  Contracts would be cash settled on the settlement price determined on overseas exchanges, and
  •  All the transactions shall be denominated in foreign currency only.
The Exchanges are advised to:
i. take steps to make necessary amendments to the relevant bye-laws, rules and regulations for the implementation of the same.
ii. bring the provisions of this circular to the notice of the members of the exchange and also to disseminate the same on their website.
This circular is issued in exercise of powers conferred under Section 11 (1) of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992, to protect the interests of investors in securities and to promote the development of, and to regulate the securities market.
SEBI/HO/MRD/DRMNP/CIR/P/2019/39
[Circular Dt. 18-03-2019]
Securities Exchange Board of India
Cabinet DecisionsLegislation Updates

The Union Cabinet, chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved National Mineral Policy 2019. 

Benefits:

The New National Mineral Policy will ensure more effective regulation.  It will lead to sustainable mining sector development in future while addressing the issues of project affected persons especially those residing in tribal areas

Objective:-

The aim of National Mineral Policy 2019 is to have a more effective, meaningful and implementable policy that brings in further transparency, better regulation, and enforcement, balanced social and economic growth as well as sustainable mining practices.

Details:

The National Mineral Policy 2019 includes provisions which will give boost to mining sector such as

  • introduction of Right of First Refusal for RP/PL holders,
  • encouraging the private sector to take up exploration,
  • auctioning in virgin areas for composite RP cum PL cum ML on revenue share basis,
  • encouragement of merger and acquisition of mining entities and
  • transfer of mining leases and creation of dedicated mineral corridors to boost private sector mining areas.
  • The 2019 Policy proposes to grant status of industry to mining activity to boost financing of mining for private sector and for acquisitions of mineral assets in other countries by private sector
  • It also mentions that Long term import export policy for mineral will help private sector in better planning and stability in business
  • The Policy also mentions rationalize reserved areas given to PSUs which have not been used and to put these areas to auction, which will give more opportunity to private sector for participation
  • The Policy also mentions to make efforts to harmonize taxes, levies & royalty with world benchmarks to help private sector

Among the changes introduced in the National Mineral Policy, 2019 include the focus on make in India initiative and Gender sensitivity in terms of the vision.  In so far as the regulation in Minerals is concerned, E-Governance, IT-enabled systems, awareness and Information campaigns have been incorporated.  Regarding the role of state in mineral development online public portal with provision for generating triggers at higher level in the event of delay of clearances has been put in place.  NMP 2019 aims to attract private investment through incentives while the efforts would be made to maintain a database of mineral resources and tenements under mining tenement systems. The new policy focusses on use coastal waterways and inland shipping for evacuation and transportation of minerals and encourages dedicated mineral corridors to facilitate the transportation of minerals.  The utilization of the district mineral fund for equitable development of project affected persons and areas. NMP 2019 proposes a long term export-import policy for the mineral sector to provide stability and as an incentive for investing in large scale commercial mining activity.

The 2019 Policy also introduces the concept of Inter-Generational Equity that deals with the well-being not only of the present generation but also of the generations to come and also proposes to constitute an inter-ministerial body to institutionalize the mechanism for ensuring sustainable development in mining.

Background:

National Mineral Policy 2019 replaces the extant National Mineral Policy 2008 (“NMP 2008”) which was announced in the year 2008. The impetus to review NMP 2008 came about by way of a direction from the Supreme Court vide its judgment dated 02.08.2017 in Writ Petition (Civil) No. 114/2014 entitled Common Cause v/s Union of India & Others.

In compliance of the directions of the Apex Court, the Ministry of Mines constituted a committee on 14.08.2017 under the chairmanship of Dr. K Rajeswara Rao, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Mines to review NMP 2008. The Committee had members from Central Ministries/ Departments, State Governments, Industry Associations and Subordinate offices of Ministry of Mines. The Committee also invited concerned NGOs and Institutional Bodies to take part in the deliberation of the Committee meetings. The Comments/suggestions from the stakeholders were also sought. Based on the deliberations held at Committee meetings and stakeholders’ comments/ suggestions, the Committee Report was prepared and submitted to the Ministry of Mines.

The Ministry of Mines accepted the committee Report and invited the comments/ suggestions of the stakeholders as part of the PLCP process. Based on the received comments/ suggestions received in PLCP process and the comments/ suggestions from the Central Ministries/ Departments the Ministry of Mines finalized the National Mineral Policy 2019.

[Press Release dt. 28-02-2019]

Cabinet