The Delhi High Court has directed SpiceJet to pay decree holders, Kal Airways and Kalanithi Maran, the entire outstanding amount qua interest on an arbitral award of Rs 578 crore. The bench was also directed to deposit the amount forthwith and further submit an affidavit within four weeks.

“Since the judgment debtor had failed to pay an amount of Rs.75.00 crores to decree holder, hence in terms of para 15(ii) of the order dated February 13, 2023 of the Hon’ble Supreme Court, there is no other alternative except to call upon the judgment debtors to deposit the entire outstanding amount qua interest forthwith, thus is so directed. Affidavit of assets be also filed within four weeks from today”, a single-judge bench of Justice Yogesh Khanna observe in the matter.

Senior Advocate Maninder Singh appeared for Kal Airways and Kalanithi Maran (also the decree holders), and Senior Advocate Sandeep Sethi appeared for SpiceJet (judgment debtor).

In the matter, a single-judge bench earlier in its order dated September 9, 2020, directed the judgment debtor-SpiceJet Ltd. to deposit an amount of Rs.242,93,70,845.56/- within three weeks. Further, through an order dated October 15, 2020, an application seeking modification of the said order, was rejected.

However, when both the orders were challenged by the judgment debtor, the Supreme Court disposed of the appeals through an order dated February 13, 2023, whereby the bank guarantee was directed to be encashed immediately and proceeds were directed to be paid directly to the decree-holder.

Furthermore, it was submitted that the judgment debtor was further required to pay an amount of Rs.75.00 crores to the decree-holder within a period of three months towards the liability on account of interest pending disposal of the petition under Section 34 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act and in the event of default in compliance of the order, the award was executable forthwith with its entirety.

Therefore, on not depositing the amount of Rs.75.00 crores yet, it was submitted that the interest liability which was Rs.362.49 crores has since increased to Rs.380 crores, and therefore, the decree-holder insisted on compliance with the order dated February 13, 2023.

It was also stipulated that the judgment debtor has not yet filed the affidavit of assets to date and therefore, there exists a violation of the said order.

On the submission that the Court has no power to extend the time limit as was granted by the Supreme Court, the bench observed, “The arguments of the decree holder appears plausible as admittedly there is no modification of order dated February 13, 2023 passed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court, hence it need to be followed”.

Accordingly, while directing the judgment-debtor to comply, the bench listed the matter for September 5, 2023.

Cause Title: Kal Airways Pvt. Ltd. v. SpiceJet Ltd. & Ors

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