Dushyant Dave Alleges Procedural Violations In Hearing Adani Group Cases In Letter To Supreme Court Chief Justice Gogoi

Dave has alleged that these cases were heard out of turn by a summer bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra.
Supreme Court of India . (Source: BloombergQuint)
Supreme Court of India . (Source: BloombergQuint)

Senior Advocate and former Supreme Court Bar Association President Dushyant Dave has written a letter to the Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi raising questions about the process followed by the apex court in listing and hearing cases pertaining to Adani Group companies. In the letter, of which BloombergQuint has a copy, Dave has alleged that these cases were heard out of turn by a summer bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra.

“My Lords, I am not in any manner commenting on the merits or otherwise of the Judgments referred above. Nor am I suggesting anything other than procedural violations which resulted in these matters being taken up by the Benches presided by Hon’ble Mr. Justice Arun Mishra. To say the least, such listings appear to be extremely unjustified as per established practice and procedure followed by this Hon’ble Court.”

In the letter, Dave begins by questioning the constitution of summer benches in 2019 by Chief Justice Gogoi. That the chief justice included himself and Justice Arun Mishra was surprising, said Dave, as senior judges generally don’t sit on vacation benches.

Dave then raised issue with the handling of the Parsa Kenta Collieries Ltd v. Rajasthan Rajya Vidyut Utpadan Nigam Limited case. His letter suggests the case was not ready to be heard, as evident from an earlier order of the Registrar of the court, but was listed, heard and disposed by a summer bench constituting Justices Arun Mishra and MR Shah. Dave alleges that other counsels appearing in the matter were not informed. Parsa Kenta Collieries is an Adani Group joint venture.

The second case mentioned in Dave’s letter is M/S Adani Power(Mundra) Ltd. Vs Gujarat Electricity Regulatory Commission and Ors.  The case, according to Dave had come up for hearing in 2017 and after that it was not listed until May 2019. A mentioning for urgent listing was made on May 23 in front the summer bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra and the case was listed, heard and judgment reserved the next day, says the letter.

I am told the total benefit to this corporate client from these two judgments will run into thousands of crores.
Dushyant Dave Letter To The Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi

Dave’s letter, first published by news websites The Wire and Bar & Bench, also refers to two other Adani Group related cases decided by benches on which Justice Mishra sat. He also disclosed that he had appeared for Adani in one of the matters at the Rajasthan High Court.

BloombergQuint has emailed the Supreme Court registry for comment and will update this story if they respond.

The Adani Group, however, called the letter “misconceived and malicious” saying that Dave’s statement was made without proper verification.

“The arbitration matter was in the list of vacation matters and came for hearing in normal course. It was as per the procedure prescribed for listing in vacation.” an Adani Group spokesperson said in a statement. “It was prescribed that arbitration matters which require to be adjudicated expeditiously can be listed with consent of parties to the case—which was done. Mr. Dave had in this matter himself appeared for us before Hon’ble Rajasthan High Court. The power matter was listed pursuant to application for urgent hearing after due notice to the opposite side advocates. The insinuations made regarding the four matters of Adani Group are wholly unwarranted.”

Here is the letter by the senior advocate to the Chief Justice of India:

Get Regular Updates