Supreme Court asks Nusli Wadia, differences to be resolved by Ratan Tata in defamation case

Supreme Court asks Nusli Wadia, differences to be resolved by Ratan Tata in defamation case

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court Monday asked Bombay Dyeing chairman Nusli Wadia and Ratan Tata, chairman emeritus of Tata Sons, to sit together and resolve their differences.

After he had been voted out of the boards of several Tata Group companies a defamation case filed against Ratan Tata and other directors of Tata Sons in 2016.

“You both are older folks. You both are leaders of industry. Why don’t you both settle the issue. Why don’t you resolve your differences and sit. Do you need to pursue litigation such as this?” , said a bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde.

At the outset, Senior advocate A Sundaram said that he has nothing against Tata Group and not claimed any defamation caused by his removal from the board.

“I am not against the company, which eliminated me. I am against those people who requisitioned for the resolution, which was finally leaked to the press,” he said, adding that they ought to withdraw the allegations.

The seat told Wadia that others and Ratan Tata have some grievances against him and questioned as to how does that amount to defamation.

Senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi said that Wadia has given a statutory notice looking for the answer.

The court should record this and he said there is a finding by the Bombay High Court that there was no intention and eliminate the request.

The moment the bench finished dictating the order, that it was upholding the findings of High Court, Sundaram stated he’s instruction from his client he would like to pursue the defamation lawsuit.

To this, the bench said that it doesn’t understand as why he (Wadia) is going to pursue the suit.

It asked Sundaram to seek instruction from his customer by January 13 and notify the court as to whether he wants to pursue the lawsuit filed in the matter.

Wadia has moved the apex court challenging the High Court order of last year, quashing proceedings initiated by a Mumbai local court against Tata Sons’ former chairman Ratan Tata, its current chief N Chandrasekaran and eight directors in a criminal defamation case filed by him.

On December 15, 2018, notices had been issued by a magistrate court in Mumbai to Ratan Tata and the others in the criminal defamation case filed by Wadia.

Wadia filed the defamation case in 2016 after he was voted out of the boards of some Tata Group companies, and claimed that Tata and others made defamatory statements against him after they removed Cyrus Mistry on October 24, 2016 as the group chairman of Tata Sons.

Tata and others had approached the court seeking to quash and set aside the proceedings initiated against them.

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