ULIP ban off; SEBI, IRDA to go by court ruling

Capital market regulator Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI) today lifted a ban it imposed on 14 insurance companies from issuing unit linked insurance policies (ULIPs), thereby ending a row with the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDA) over equity-linked insurance schemes.

Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee told reporters in New Delhi that the regulators have agreed to seek legal mandate to solve the issue.

"The chairman, SEBI and chairman, IRDA held discussions on the jurisdiction over unit linked insurance products (ULIPs). To resolve any ambiguity and to ensure smooth functioning in the markets, the regulators have agreed to jointly seek a binding legal mandate from an appropriate court," he said,

"Meanwhile, status-quo ante is being restored," he added.

The status quo will be maintained till a court decides who can regulate ULIP schemes, Mukherjee said.

ULIP is an insurance product in which a bulk of the premiums is invested in equities and bonds.