The Delhi High Court will, on Friday, hear a petition by Google protesting against the alleged leak of the Competition Commission of India's (CCI) confidential report, relating to the probe against the tech giant, to the media.
The report pertained to an ongoing investigation by the antitrust body into Google's Android smartphone agreements.
The plea was mentioned before a two-judge bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and justice Jyoti Singh for an urgent listing and the court permitted it for hearing on Friday, September 24.
Google in a statement said that on September 18, a confidential interim fact-finding report handed in by the Director General's office to the CCI pertaining to an ongoing probe into Google's smartphone agreements was leaked to media.
It said Google has not yet received or reviewed this confidential report.
The company said it has filed the petition in the court seeking redress in this matter, specifically protesting against the breach of confidence which impairs Google's ability to defend itself and harms it and its partners.
A Google spokesperson said, "We are deeply concerned that the Director General's report, which contains our confidential information in an ongoing case, was leaked to the media while in the CCI's custody.
Protecting confidential information is fundamental to any governmental investigation, and we are pursuing our legal right to seek redress and prevent any further unlawful disclosures.
"We cooperated fully and maintained confidentiality throughout the investigative process, and we hope and expect the same level of confidentiality from the institutions we engage with."
DG's findings do not reflect the final decision of the CCI, and the submission of the investigation report is an interim procedural step, it said, adding that Google has not yet had the opportunity to review them, much less submit its defence of any allegations.
According to reports, the CCI probe has found Google allegedly abusing its dominant position with respect to the mobile operating system Android.
On this, the tech giant has said that Android has led to more competition and innovation.
The reports said it has been found that Google indulged in unfair business practices in relation to Android.
After prima-facie finding alleged violation of competition norms, the watchdog, in early 2019, had ordered a detailed probe against Google in this regard.
As per procedure, CCI will closely analyse the probe report and seek the views and submissions of the parties concerned before passing an order.
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