NCLAT admits Amazon plea against CCI order on deal with Future

Our Bureau | Updated on: Jan 13, 2022
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Amazon has cited more than sixty grounds in its petition with the NCLAT

The NCLAT has agreed to hear Amazon’s plea challenging the Competition Commission of India’s (CCI) suspension of approval to the 2019 transaction with Future Group on February 02.

Amazon had dragged the Competition Commission of India (CCI) to the NCLAT for temporarily suspending its 1,413-crore deal with Future Coupons Private Limited, which was signed in 2019. According to sources, Amazon has challenged the CCI order on multiple grounds, and the matter is likely to be listed this week.

Anti-Trust body

In mid-December, the anti- trust body put the purchase of 49 per cent stake in the Future group entity in abeyance and ordered a penalty of ₹202 crore on Amazon for allegedly not be ing upfront about the actual scope and purpose of the deal.

Amazon has cited more than sixty grounds in its petition with the NCLAT. A copy of the petition was reviewed by BusinessLine.

“The Appellant submits that the Impugned Order of the Respondent Commission is per verse, illegal, contrary to law and contrary to record,” it said.

It further pointed out that the deal was signed in April 2019, and the complaint was filed towards the end of 2021, as per law, the CCI did not have the right to unwind a transaction post 12 months.

The CCI put the 2019 deal in abeyance. According to a source, as per the laws and acts binding to the CCI, it cannot put a deal in ‘abeyance’. It can, how ever, either revoke or give per mission to continue the deal.

Amazon also pointed out that the fine levied by the CCI was way over the mark than what other penalties were levied in prior cases. The CCI had levied a fine of 202 crore in totality on Amazon.

In its documents to the NCLAT, Amazon claimed that as per a March 2019 notification to the CCI, there were eight agreements, and it had submitted all these agreements to the CCI at the time of seeking permission from the antitrust body.

Published on January 13, 2022

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