Watch your step in India

By Shardul Thacker, Mulla & Mulla & Craigie Blunt & Caroe
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Recent international efforts to combat corruption, be it the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) in the US, or the UK Bribery Act 2010, have had a global impact. Companies doing business in India should comply strictly with the extensive anti-bribery regime.

There is a history of corruption at all levels of the Indian government as excessive bureaucracy has resulted in complicated and opaque procedures. Underpaid civil servants have broad discretionary powers, and some deliberately stall administrative procedures to induce improper payment.

It is also customary to give gifts to business contacts and government officials during religious festivals. In addition, officials often solicit donations from businesses for charitable organizations. These practices need to be scrutinized carefully in light of FCPA guidelines.

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Shardul Thacker is a partner at Mulla & Mulla & Craigie Blunt & Caroe in Mumbai.

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Mulla House, 51, Mahatma Gandhi Road,

Flora Fountain

Mumbai 400 001, INDIA

Tel: +91 22 2262 3191 / +91 22 6634 5496

Fax: +91 22 6634 5497

Email: shardul.thacker@mullaandmulla.com

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