This chapter deals with Registration offices established by the Government and fees to be charged for registration purpose.
REGISTRATION OFFICES (SECTION 396):
For exercising powers and discharging functions conferred on the Central Government under this Act, the Central Government shall by notification establish such number of offices at such places as it thinks fit, specifying their jurisdiction.
The Central government may appoint Registrars, Additional, Joint, Deputy and Assistant Registrars as it consider necessary for the registration of companies and discharge of various functions under the act. The Government may prescribe the powers and duties.
The terms and conditions of service shall be prescribed by the Government.
The Central Government may direct a seal or Seals to be prepared for the authentication of documents required for or in connection with the registration of companies.
ADMISSIBILITY OF CERTAIN DOCUMENTS AS EVIDENCE (SECTION 397):
Any document reproducing or derived from returns and documents filed by a company with the Registrar on paper or in electronic form or stored on any electronic data storage device or computer readable media by the Registrar, and authenticated by the Registrar or any other officer empowered by the Central Government shall be deemed to be a document for the purposes of this Act and the rules. Such document shall be admissible in any proceedings without further proof or production of the original as evidence of any contents of the original or of any fact stated therein of which direct evidence is admissible.
FILING OF APPLICATIONS, DOCUMENTS AND INSPECTION IN ELECTRONIC FORM (SECTION 398):
The Central Government may make rules in relation to –
(a) such applications, balance sheet, prospectus, return, declaration, memorandum, articles, particulars of charges, or any other particulars or document as may be required to be filed or delivered under this Act, shall be filed in the electronic form and authenticated in such manner as may be prescribed;
(b) such document, notice, any communication or intimation, as may be required to be served or delivered under this Act, in the electronic form and authenticated in such manner as may be prescribed;
(c) such applications, balance sheet, prospectus, return, register, memorandum, articles, particulars of charges, or any other particulars or document and return filed under this Act or rules made there under shall be maintained by the Registrar in the electronic form and registered or authenticated, as the case may be, in such manner as may be prescribed;
(d) such inspection of the memorandum, articles, register, index, balance sheet, return or any other particulars or document maintained in the electronic form, as is otherwise available for inspection under this Act or the rules made thereunder, may be made by any person through the electronic form in such manner as may be prescribed;
(e) such fees, charges or other sums payable under this Act or the rules made thereunder shall be paid through the electronic form and in such manner as may be prescribed; and
(f) the Registrar shall register change of registered office, alteration of memorandum or articles, prospectus, issue certificate of incorporation, register such document, issue such certificate, record the notice, receive such communication as may be required to be registered or issued or recorded or received, as the case may be, under this Act or the rules made thereunder or perform duties or discharge functions or exercise powers under this Act or the rules made thereunder or do any act which is by this Act directed to be performed or discharged or exercised or done by the Registrar in the electronic form in such manner as may be prescribed.
INSPECTION, PRODUCTION AND EVIDENCE OF DOCUMENTS KEPT BY REGISTRAR (SECTION 399):
Any person may –
(a) inspect by electronic means any documents kept by the Registrar on payment of fee;
(b) require a certificate of incorporation of any company or a copy or extract of any other document on advance payment of fee;
This right shall be available –
(a) in relation to documents delivered with a prospectus, only during the fourteen days beginning with the date of publication of prospectus and at other times only with the permission of the Central Government; and
(b) in relation to document delivered under Section 388 (1) (b), only during the fourteen days beginning with the date of publication of prospectus and at other times only with the permission of the Central Government.
No processes for compelling the production of any document kept by the Registrar shall issue from any court or the Tribunal except with the leave of the court or the Tribunal. Any such process shall bear thereon a statement that it is issued with the leave of the court or the Tribunal.
A copy or extract of any document kept and registered at any of the offices for the registration of companies, certified to be a true copy by the Registrar, all legal proceedings, shall be admissible in evidence as equal validity with the original document.
ELECTRONIC FORM (SECTION 400):
The Central Government may also provide that the electronic form shall be exclusive, or in the alternative or in addition to the physical form.
VALUE ADDED SERVICES (SECTION 401):
The Central Government may provide value added services through the electronic form and levy fee.
PROVISIONS OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY ACT, 2000 (SECTION 402):
All the provisions of the Information Technology Act, 2000 relating to the electronic records, including the manner and format in which the electronic records shall be filed, shall apply in relation to the records in electronic form.
FILING FEE (SECTION 403):
Any document to be submitted, filed, registered or recorded, or any fact or information required or authorised to be registered under this Act, shall be submitted, filed, registered or recorded within the time specified in the relevant provision on payment of such fee as may be prescribed. Such document or information may be filed within two hundred and seventy days from the date from the date by which it should be submitted, filed, registered or recorded, on payment of additional fee as prescribed.
Where a company fails or commits any default to submit, file, register or record any document, fact or information before the expiry of the extended period specified with additional fee, the company and the officers of the company who are in default, shall, without prejudice to the liability for payment of fee and additional fee, be liable for the penalty or punishment provided under this Act for such failure or default.
FEES TO BE CREDITED TO PUBLIC ACCOUNT (SECTION 404):
All fees, charges and other sums received by any Registrar, Additional, Joint, Deputy or Assistant Registrar or any other officer of the Central Government in pursuance of any provision of this Act shall be paid into the public account of India in the Reserve Bank of India.
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