Delhi High Court rejects Future Group’s plea to terminate arbitration proceeding | The Financial Express

Delhi High Court rejects Future Group’s plea to terminate arbitration proceeding

The Delhi High Court had recently reserved its verdict on a batch of pleas on the ongoing legal tussle between Amazon and the Future Group over Future Retail’s (FRL’s) Rs 24,731-crore merger deal with Reliance Retail.

Delhi High Court rejects Future Group’s plea to terminate arbitration proceeding
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The Delhi High Court on Tuesday dismissed Future Group’s plea seeking termination of the arbitration proceedings initiated by Amazon before the Singapore International Arbitration Court (SIAC).

Justice C Hari Shankar said that he has not expressed any opinion on the merits of the arguments raised by the parties and that the arbitration before the SIAC will continue.

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Amazon, on November 17, had moved the Supreme Court for allowing arbitration proceedings to restart at the SIAC. At that hearing, representing Amazon NV Investment Holding LLC, senior counsel Gopal Subramaniam had pointed out how Future Group was trying to stall the proceedings.

“You (Future group and others) cannot keep stultifying the proceeding before the arbitral tribunal and this is just a ploy to delay the proceeding. These are all ploys by well-heeled parties to delay the arbitration proceeding. Your client is trying to be too clever by half,” a bench comprising Chief Justice DY Chandrachud and Justices Hima Kohli and J B Pardiwala said.

Justice Chandrachud said he was “concerned” as the CJI due to the claim made that there was “rule of law” prevailing in the country. “You can in any case challenge the final award to be passed in the arbitral proceedings,” the bench said, making clear “we will make sure that the arbitral proceedings go on”.

The Delhi High Court had recently reserved its verdict on a batch of pleas on the ongoing legal tussle between Amazon and the Future Group over Future Retail’s (FRL’s) Rs 24,731-crore merger deal with Reliance Retail.

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The legal battle between Future Group and Amazon started in October 2020 after the former decided to sell its retail, logistics and warehousing businesses to Reliance Retail, a subsidiary of Reliance Industries. The move by Amazon comes because in August 2019, the US e-commerce major acquired a 49% stake in Future Coupons, the promoter entity of Future Retail, for about `1,500 crore.

After the Future-Reliance deal, Amazon approached the SIAC in October 2020 and an emergency arbitration interim order was passed, upholding the position of Amazon. The order directed the Future Group entities not to proceed with the transactions with Reliance Retail.

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First published on: 23-11-2022 at 05:30 IST