Orders and Judgments Duration July 8, 2021 – July 22, 2021

“We all want to be famous people, and the moment we want to be something we are no longer free.”

JIDDU KRISHNAMURTI

ALTERNATE DISPUTE RESOLUTION

  • Project Director, National Highways Authority of India v. M. Hakeem &Anr.
    SC decides whether Courts can modify Arbitral Awards under S. 34 of Arbitration Act or is their power limited. – 20 July 2021
    The Supreme Court, while hearing a case of Section 34 of Arbitration Act, 1996 held that an award cannot be modified by the Appellate Court. In the present case, an appeal was filed to modify the arbitral award made under the National Highways Act, 1956 in order to increase the compensation awarded by the Arbitrator.The Bench noted that far from Section 34 being in the nature of an appellate provision, it provides only for setting aside awards on very limited grounds, such grounds being contained in sub-sections (2) and (3) of Section 34.It is the opinion of the arbitral tribunal which counts in order to eliminate the grounds for setting aside the award, which may be indicated by the court hearing the Section 34 application.
    Further, the Court stated that Section 34 is modelled on the UNCITRAL Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration, 1985 under which no power to modify an award is given to a court hearing a challenge to an award and that if the power to modify an award is to be used it would be an exercise of power beyond the limits. It noted that the Parliament with a vivid intention did not include the power to modify and award under Section 34 of the Arbitration Act, 1996.
    The Judgement can be accessed at:
    https://main.sci.gov.in/supremecourt/2020/22596/22596_2020_32_1502_28660_Judgement_20-Jul-2021.pdf

CORPORATE

  • Franklin Templeton Trustee Services Private Limited v. Amruta Garg
    Consent of Majority Shareholders needed for winding up funds after publication of notices. – 14 July 2021
    The Supreme Court, while agreeing with the views of the High Court, said that the requirement for consent of majority of shareholders will be post the publication of notices.
    The Court held that when the trustees decide to wind up a scheme by majority, they are required to seek consent of the majority of the unit holders, present and voting, under Regulation 18(15)(c). The use of the word "shall" in the provision is couched as a command. A harmonious construction of Regulation 18(15)(c) read with Regulations 39 to 42, would showcase that the even though the "opinion" of the trustees would stand, the consent of the unit holders would be a pre-requisite for winding up.
    The order can be accessed at:
    https://main.sci.gov.in/supremecourt/2020/25496/25496_2020_38_1501_28570_Judgement_14-Jul-2021.pdf
  • Bank of Maharasthra v. Videocon Industries Ltd. &Ors.
    NCLAT stays the sale of the Videocon group of companies to Vedanta’s Twin Star Technologies – 19 July 2021
    The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) refused to stay the implementation of Piramal’s approved resolution plan for Dewan Housing Finance (DHFL) on the plea filed by 63 Moons Technologies, a debenture holder of the debt-ridden mortgage lender. "It's a matter of law and we can't pass an interim order on the approved resolution plan," NCLAT said.
    “Suffice it to say that having gone through the rival contentions of the learned counsel for both sides, we do not find that these are appeals where interim order should be passed for grounds being raised by the appellant (63 Moons Technologies),” the NCLAT said in its judgment.
    “If the averments made by appellant are juxtaposed with averments made by respondents, we do not find it a fit case to pass interim orders as sought. We do not think that any interim order as sought with regard to resolution plan approved needs to be passed,” it added. It has allowed the Piramal plan and the committee of creditors to proceed with the implementation of the resolution plan.
    The Judgement can be accessed at:
    https://efiling.nclat.gov.in/nclat/order_view.php?path=L05DTEFUX0RvY3VtZW50cy9DSVNfRG9jdW1lbnRzL2Nhc2Vkb2Mvb3JkZXJzL0RFTEhJLzIwMjEtMDctMjMvY291cnRzLzEvZGFpbHkvMTYyNzAyNTcxNTEwMTE5NjkzMDY2MGZhNzEzMzJlOGJiLnBkZg==
  • Ashok Surana v. A.R.K. Sinha Member (Judicial)
    SC scraps PIL to declare that NCLT cannot act as appellate authority-23 July 2021
    The Supreme Court has declined to entertain a PIL seeking to declare that the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) cannot act as an appellate authority to the decisions of the top court and find flaws so as to circumvent the "rule of law" laid down. The Bench stated that the petition is clearly not maintainable and there is no reason to entertain the petition under Article 32 and that“It is not necessary for this court to return any finding on the question sought to be raised in the abstract without any live challenge to an order of the adjudicating authority. In any event there are appellate remedies available under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) to an aggrieved party. The petition is dismissed,” the bench said.
    The Order can be accessed at:
    https://indiankanoon.org/doc/70960343/

ENVIRONMENT

  • RWA Society v. Govt. of NCT of Delhi
    NGT pulls up Delhi Jal Board for failing to control odour from a sewage treatment plant, imposes Rs. 5 Lakh Per Month till compliance – 13 July 2021
    The National Green Tribunal has pulled up the Delhi Jal Board for its failure to prevent and control bad odour from a Sewage Treatment Plant in Delhi's Kondli area. It has hence directed the Board to pay Rs. 5 lakh per month as cost to Central Pollution Control Board, till compliance. The amount shall be used for restoration of environment. It further said, “It is clear that the DJB has failed to perform its obligation of preventing odour at the STP and only superficial steps have been taken to claim that odour has been controlled. The problem has been persisting since long but plea of pandemic is being taken to justify inaction.”The Tribunal was dealing with a plea concerning remedial actions to be taken for controlling the issue of bad odour from the said STP.
    The order can be accessed at:
    http://www.livelaw.in.elibraryhnlu.remotexs.in/pdf_upload/filename-3-396526.pdf

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

  • Ajit Mohan & Ors. v. Legislative Assembly, NCT of Delhi & Ors.
    Role of Facebook in Delhi riots must be probed, Social Media entities should remain accountable – 8 July 2021
    The Supreme Court held that the digital platforms which can ‘polarise public debated’ and ‘influence vast sections of opinions’ should remain accountable to those who trust them. The Court stated that, “This (unity in diversity) cannot be disrupted at any cost or under any professed freedom by a giant like Facebook claiming ignorance or lack of any pivotal role,” and dismissed the plea filed challenging the summons issued by the Delhi Assembly's Peace and Harmony committee for failing to appear before it as witness in connection with the Delhi Riots. Upholding the Delhi Assembly's right to summon them, it was observed that, while Facebook has played a crucial role in enabling free speech by providing a voice to the voiceless and a means to escape state censorship, it cannot lose sight of the fact that it has simultaneously become a ‘platform for disruptive messages, voices, and ideologies.’
    The Judgment can be accessed at:
    https://www.livelaw.in/pdf_upload/facebook-vp-challenge-delhi-assembly-summons-396317.pdf

LITIGATION

  • Dr. A. Suresh Kumar & Ors. v. Amit Agarwal
    Constitution Bench Judgment which held delay beyond 45 days in filing Written Statement before NCDRC can’t be condoned applies only prospectively – 8 July 2021
    In this case, the application for condonation of delay was filed prior to the judgment of the Constitution Bench in New India Assurance Company Ltd. v. Hilli Multipurpose Cold Storage Pvt. Ltd. with a delay of 7 days beyond the period of 30+15 days (45 days). NCDRC rejected the application for condonation of delay in filing the written statement citing the Constitution Bench judgment. Against this dismissal, the party filed appeal before Apex Court. The Supreme Court held that, “In our view, since the application for condonation of delay was filed prior to the judgment of the Constitution Bench, which was delivered on 04.03.2020, the said application for condonation of delay ought to have been considered on merits and should not have been dismissed on the basis of theConstitution Bench judgment in the case of New India Assurance Company Limited (supra) because the said judgment was to operate prospectively and the written statement as well as the application for condonation of delay had been filed much prior to the said judgment."
    The Judgment can be accessed at:
    https://main.sci.gov.in/supremecourt/2021/5908/5908_2021_41_14_28296_Judgement_08-Jul-2021.pdf

Disclaimer “This information has been gathered from various sources. Nothing herein is or may be construed as legal advice”.