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Bombay High Court to hear Jet-Sahara dispute

New Delhi, Aug 28 (IANS) The Supreme Court Monday directed that all proceedings pending before a Lucknow court relating to a petition filed by Sahara Airlines be transferred to Bombay High Court where two petitions filed by Jet Airways are already pending.

Monday, August 28, 2006 | 7:54:16 PM IST (+05:30 GMT)
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New Delhi, Aug 28 (IANS) The Supreme Court Monday directed that all proceedings pending before a Lucknow court relating to a petition filed by Sahara Airlines be transferred to Bombay High Court where two petitions filed by Jet Airways are already pending.

A bench of Chief Justice Y.K. Sabharwal and Justice C.K. Thakker passed this order on petitions filed by Jet Airways and others seeking transfer of an arbitration petition by Sahara India Commercial Corporation before a district court in Lucknow to the Bombay High court.

While shifting the cases, the bench made it clear that an interim order passed by the Lucknow court restraining Jet Airways from demanding and/or receiving Rs.15 billion, deposited in an escrow account in ICICI Bank, and an injunction restraining the bank from releasing that amount would continue until further orders.

The bench asked the high court to first decide the issue whether it had the jurisdiction to hear the matter. If it was found that Bombay High Court had the jurisdiction then all the proceedings would be heard together, the bench said.

It also asked the Lucknow District Court to send the files of the two cases pending there to Bombay High Court. The bench asked the high court to decide the matter expeditiously.

In the transfer petition, Jet said that it had filed an arbitration petition in Bombay High Court June 20 and on the same day Sahara filed an application in a Lucknow district court.

On June 21, the district judge passed an interim order restraining Jet from demanding and/or receiving Rs.15 billion, deposited in the escrow account, and an injunction restraining the bank from releasing the amount.

On June 23, the district judge passed another interim order restraining Jet from enforcing the pledge agreement.

Jet maintained that it had initiated the first proceedings in Mumbai and that the Lucknow court did not have any jurisdiction to entertain the matter.

In any case, as per the agreement between the two parties, the place of arbitration was in Mumbai, it said and sought the transfer of the cases to Bombay High Court.

Copyright : Indo-Asian News Service
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