Originally, neither the Investor Education and Protection Fund Authority (Accounting, Audit, Transfer and Refund) Rules, 2016 nor the Companies Act, 2013 have any mention of Nodal Officer except Form IEPF – 5. The Investor Education and Protection Fund Authority (Accounting, Audit, Transfer and Refund) Second Amendment Rules, 2017 first time bring this term in main rules.
As I mentioned earlier blog post here and here, “The Form IEPF – 5 suggests that this form should be forwarded to the nodal officer (IEPF) of the company. It is reported that a mail from MCA to companies asked for such designation. In a normal case, company secretary of the company or any person so authorised by the company shall take this responsibility.”
Now, these amendment rules give proper legal backing to the office of Nodal Officer.
According to newly inserted Rule 7(2A), every company which has deposited the amount to the Fund shall nominate a Nodal Officer for the purpose of coordination with IEPF Authority. The Company shall communicate the contact details of the Nodal Officer duly indicating his or her designation, postal address, telephone and mobile number and company authorized e-mail ID to the IEPF Authority. Such communication shall be made within fifteen days from the date of publication of these rules and the company shall display the name of Nodal Officer and his e-mail ID on its website.
Please note most companies have appointed such Nodal Officer in the response of earlier communication made by Ministry of Corporate Affairs to companies and advertisement published in newspapers. Companies also made a communication to IEPF Authority earlier. The newly inserted rule suggest making such communication once again.
Purpose of Nodal Officer
Now, these rules suggest that nodal officer shall facilitate communication with IEPF Authority.
Earlier, Form IEPF – 5 refer nodal officer for sending documents by a claimant to nodal officer of the company. The term nodal officer is used in a declaration in that form IEPF – 5. The declaration read as under –
“I understand that I, am the claimant and after filing the refund claim in this form online, shall to send the attachments prescribed below to Nodal Officer (IEPF) of the company at its registered office in an envelope marked “claim for refund from IEPF Authority” for initiating the verification for the claim:
- Print out of duly filled claim form with claimant signature
- Copy of acknowledgement
- Indemnity Bond (original) with claimant signature
- Advance Stamped receipt (original)
- In case of refund of matured deposit or debenture, original certificate thereto
- Copy of Aadhaar Card
- Proof of entitlement (certificate of share/Interest warrant Application No. etc.)
- Cancelled Cheque leaf
- Copy of Passport, OCI and PI card in case of foreigners and NRI
- Other optional documents, (if any)”
Presently nodal officer shall coordinate between investors, company and IEPF Authority.