Supreme Court Sets Aside Gujarat HC's Order Granting Interim Relief To Adani Ports Special Economic Zone
The Supreme Court has set aside Gujarat High Court's order granting interim relief to Adani Ports Special Economic Zone Limited (APSEZL) which was in dispute with Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC).
The Bench of Justice BR Gavai and Justice CT Ravikumar while setting aside the order observed that when an issue involved the balancing of interests of a statutory corporation and a private company, the approach of the High Court ought to have been a balanced one.
The Court also held, "If a settlement was to be arrived at, unless the same was found to be in the interest of both the parties, it could not have been thrust upon a statutory Corporation to its detriment and to the advantage of a private entity."
In this case, the Gujarat High Court had permitted the APSEZL to acquire 34 acres of land that was adjacent to Mundra Port in Gujarat if CWC failed to get approval as SEZ complaint-Unit within three months.
Aggrieved by the order of the Gujarat High Court, the CWC approached the Supreme Court.
Senior Counsel Maninder Singh appeared for the Appellant while Senior Counsel Shyam Divan appeared for the Respondents before the Court.
The Bench observed, "…the Division Bench totally ignored the stand taken by the Ministry of CAF&PD, which too had opposed such a swapping. Rather than the High Court being surprised with the conduct of the appellant-CWC, it is we who are surprised with the observations made by the High Court."
Further, the Bench also held, "The High Court ought to have taken into consideration that, unless all the three conditions were complied with, the interest of the appellant-CWC, which is a statutory Corporation, could not have been safeguarded. If a settlement was to be arrived at, unless the same was found to be in the interest of both the parties, it could not have been thrust upon a statutory Corporation to its detriment and to the advantage of a private entity."
Thus, accordingly, the Court allowed the appeals and set aside the impugned order of the High Court.
Cause Title – Central Warehousing Corporation v. Adani Ports Special Economic Zone Limited (APSEZL) and Others