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Bombay HC rejects Jackie Shroff’s ex-business partner’s plea in $3.5mn row | Mumbai News – Times of India

Bombay HC rejects Jackie Shroff’s ex-business partner’s plea in $3.5mn row | Mumbai News - Times of India

MUMBAI: In another legal relief to actor Jackie Shroff, Bombay high court on Tuesday dismissed an appeal filed by his former business partner in a $3.5 million dispute in arbitration. Last year, Justice S C Gupte of HC set aside a November 2014 arbitral award requiring Shroff to give $3.5 million in liquidated damages to former business partner R S Iyer, a citizen and resident of Singapore.
The award against Shroff was because the arbitrator held that a letter by his wife, Ayesha, was in breach of a dispute settlement agreement of 2011 to not complain again of allegations made in a criminal complaint by him.
Iyer then filed an appeal against Justice Gupte’s order. The appeal bench of Justices R D Dhanuka and V G Bisht held that Justice Gupte had “rightly interfered with such perverse and patently illegal award…’’ The division bench directed that Iyer should not be allowed to withdraw $2 million deposited with a Mumbai bank, for eight weeks, while Shroff can take appropriate legal steps to withdraw it.
Shroff and Iyer, shareholders of an Indian company, had in 1995 entered into a JV with Sony group to set up a TV channel. Following disputes, in 2010 Shroff filed a complaint with the Economic Offences Wing. In 2011, a settlement deed was executed between them to withdraw the complaint, and on its withdrawal, $1.5 million would be released to Shroff from an escrow account and an additional $2 million was also to be kept in an escrow account to be released later.
Shroff’s counsel Arif Bookwalla and Shyam Dewani argued that the appeal be dismissed, while Iyer’s counsel Ankita Singhania and Vishal Gandhi argued that the single judge had “totally overlooked’’ that the settlement deed provided that its violation would disentitle Shroff from receiving $2 million and would need to return $1.5 million.
The HC on Tuesday held that the arbitrator overlooked vital evidence led by Shroff. It added, “the arbitrator has rewritten the contract while rendering the finding that the clauses of the deed of settlement provided for recovery of liquidated damages.’’


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