The Indian Competition Authority refuses to penalize railway companies for bid-rigging due to the economic downturn caused by COVID-19 (Chief Materials Manager, South Eastern Railway / Hindustan Composites)

KEY POINTS While the CCI found sufficient evidence to hold that there existed a contravention of Section 3(3) of the Act, given the economic downturn due to the pandemic faced by Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (“MSMEs”) in India, and other public interest considerations, the CCI imposed no penalty and only directed the parties to cease and desist from indulging in such activities in the future. BRIEF FACTS Multiple references were made to CCI by (i) Chief Materials Manager, South Eastern Railway, (ii) the Controller of Stores, Central Railway, (iii) the Chief Materials Manager, Eastern Railway, (iv) the Chief Materials Manager-I, North Western Railway and (v) the Chief

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