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CJI NV Ramana rebukes senior counsels for filing volumes of documents in Amazon-Future case

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The Supreme Court on Tuesday heard the Future Group plea challenging the Delhi High Court’s order dated October 29 that had rejected its plea for an interim stay on the Singapore Arbitration Tribunal order that declined to interfere with the Emergency Award restraining it from going ahead with the Reliance deal.

Chief Justice of India Justice N.V. Ramana, Justice A.S. Bopanna and Justice Hima Kohli directed the parties to file a convenience compilation with minimum documents properly indexed. The petitions will be heard next on December 8.

But the voluminous documents submitted by the parties annoyed CJI N.V. Ramana. The CJI asked what’s the point of both sides filing so many volumes of documents. “Is it with the purpose of dragging on or otherwise to harass judges? What is the point?” Justice Ramana asked.

The bench took note of the huge number of documents after it couldn’t easily locate an earlier order being referred to by the counsel from the documents filed.

While addressing the counsel appearing for Amazon, CJI Ramana asked since so many things were filed yesterday was it necessary to file their own versions today instead of relying on the same documents filed by the Future side. The bench then suggested it could grant time to the counsels to file a convenience compilation.

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The Supreme Court was hearing a batch of petitions, including two special leave petitions filed by Future Coupons and Future Retail against the against the Delhi High Court order that directed the attachment of assets of Future Group companies and its promoters.

The Bench refused to consider an application filed by IDBI Trusteeship Services Ltd. seeking clarification of the Supreme Court’s order dated September 9, 2021, where the Apex Court stayed proceedings by Amazon for enforcement of the Emergency Award. While refusing the application, the bench said, “Did we ask HC to not entertain any first proceeding, it was only with regard to subject matter of this SLP. Where is the ambiguity?”

“Feel free to move an application before High Court, point it out before the HC that order was pertaining to pending proceeding, and your application be taken up.” Justice Kohli said. The bench then permitted Kaul to withdraw the application and move High Court.

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