Reliance Retail Ventures has reportedly asked National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) for permission to hold a shareholders' meet to consider and approve its Rs 24,715-crore deal with Future Retail.
Reliance Industries' counsel Janak Dwarkadas presented before the Mumbai bench of the tribunal that Reliance and its subsidiaries are neither party to the legal dispute between Amazon and Future under consideration of the Supreme Court nor to the arbitration proceedings before the Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), reported CNBC TV18.
He further argued that the Supreme Court has allowed NCLT proceedings to continue but not culminate in a final order.
Reliance stated that the legal proceedings involving Amazon and Future did not stop the Mukesh Ambani-led company from seeking its shareholders' approval for the deal as the final verdict will come from Supreme Court.
Meanwhile, Amazon contested the plea on grounds that NCLT hearings are illegal if the award by emergency arbitrator in Singapore persists, as there is no stay on this order. Amazon's counsel argued that any step towards the Reliance-Future deal prejudices Amazon and violates the US-based retailer's rights.
The NCLT bench has reserved Reliance's plea to hold shareholders' meeting for order. The tribunal has set June 21 as the next date to hear Reliance Retail's and Future Retail's composite scheme matter. It has also asked Amazon and Reliance to file written submissions by May 24 evening.
Future Group had announced the Rs 24,713-crore deal to sell its retail and wholesale assets to Reliance retail on August 29, 2020. However, Amazon, which had bought a 49 per cent stake in Future Coupons in 2019 for Rs 1,500 crore said its deal with Future prevents Biyani's company from selling shares of Future Retail to RIL as it indirectly owned about 3.5 per cent stake in Future Retail. On October 25, 2020, the Singapore arbitration court ruled in favour of Amazon and passed an interim order that put the deal on hold.
Last month, the Supreme Court had stayed all high court proceedings in the case and decided to hear the matter itself. However, the apex court has deferred the hearing on dispute between Amazon and Future group till June 28 to take up more pressing matters in light of the second COVID-19 wave.