Delhi High Court stays Amazon-Future arbitration over Reliance deal

Amazon and the Future Group have been locked in a bitter legal tussle ever since the latter entered into a deal for the sale of its assets to Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Retail

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday stayed the Amazon-Future arbitration which is going on before a three-member arbitral tribunal over the latter’s ₹24,500-crore deal with Reliance.

The high court also stayed a single judge’s January 4 order that had dismissed the Future Group’s two pleas seeking a direction to the arbitration tribunal, adjudicating Amazon’s objections against the former’s deal with Reliance, to take a decision on its application for terminating the arbitration proceedings before moving further.

A bench of Chief Justice D.N. Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh said there is a prima facie case in favour of appellants Future Retail Ltd (FRL) and Future Coupons Pvt Ltd (FCPL) and if a stay is not granted, it will cause an irreparable loss to them.

"We hereby stay further proceedings of the arbitral tribunal till the next date of hearing and we also stay the single judge’s January 4 order till the next date of hearing," the bench said while listing the matter for further hearing on February 1.

The High Court also issued a notice to Amazon.com NV Investment Holdings LLC on the appeals filed by FRL and FCPL challenging the single judge’s order.

Amazon and the Future Group have been locked in a bitter legal tussle after the U.S. e-commerce giant dragged the latter to arbitration at the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) in October 2020. Amazon argued that FRL violated their contract by entering into a deal for the sale of its assets to billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Retail on a slump sale basis for ₹24,500 crore.

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