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DMRC Assures Delhi High Court To Deposit ₹600 Crores For DAMEPL In Escrow Account Within Two Days

Nupur Thapliyal
21 Feb 2022 1:15 PM GMT
DMRC Assures Delhi High Court To Deposit ₹600 Crores For DAMEPL In Escrow Account Within Two Days
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The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) on Monday assured the Delhi High Court that it shall deposit an amount of Rs. 600 Crores in the escrow account of Reliance Infrastructure-promoted Delhi Airport Metro Express Pvt Ltd (DAMEPL) within a period of two days. Justice Suresh Kumar Kait was hearing DAMEPL's plea against DMRC, seeking enforcement of the arbitration award dated May 11,...

The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) on Monday assured the Delhi High Court that it shall deposit an amount of Rs. 600 Crores in the escrow account of Reliance Infrastructure-promoted Delhi Airport Metro Express Pvt Ltd (DAMEPL) within a period of two days.

Justice Suresh Kumar Kait was hearing DAMEPL's plea against DMRC, seeking enforcement of the arbitration award dated May 11, 2017.

The Court took the statement on record made on behalf of Senior Advocate Parag Tripathi appearing for DMRC. The Court recorded thus:

"Mr. Parag Tripathi, learned senior counsel appearing for Judgment Debtor has assured this Court that an amount of Rs. 600 crore shall be deposited in the escrow account of the decree holder within two days."

Accordingly, the Court also reserved it's judgment in the matter.

During the earlier course of hearing today, Tripathi submitted that DMRC will pay an amount of Rs 600 crores within a span of 72 hours while seeking time for approaching the banks for the purpose of taking loan in order to pay the amount of arbitral award.

Tripathi reiterated his stand that the amount which was lying in the corporation's bank account was earmarked for various projects for metro development which neither belonged to the DMRC nor did the corporation have a disposing power over the same.

He argued that sec. 60 of Code of Civil Procedure makes it clear that what is to be recovered and recoverable under CPC is either belonging to the judgment-debtor, or over which, or the profits of which, he has a disposing power.

"Monies which are received by me from various governmental agencies, earmarked for specific projects are not monies either belonging to me or over whom I have a power to dispose it off which are to be used for conversion into assets of the running metro or setting up of new metro. Once that happens, in any case, these assets are immune from attachment," Tripathi argued.

He added "My money which is available with me for disposal or monies over which I have depository power which can be said to belong to me are monies in the form of commission which I get over 20 year period once I start working. That money is also not mine now but yes, as and when I keep on constructing, I will be entitled to pick up between 2 to 5% as commission charges."

However, the Court asked DMRC to deposit the said amount within two days.

Earlier, DMRC had disclosed before the Court that is has a total of Rs. 6,208.03 Crores funds lying in various banks.

The Judgment Debtor, DMRC, had preferred a challenge under Section 34 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 to the Award which was dismissed by a Single Judge of the High Court vide judgment dated March 6, 2018.

Thereafter, the said judgment was challenged before a division bench under Section 37 of the Act which was partly allowed and the Award was set aside vide judgement dated January 15, 2019.

DAMEPL, the Decree Holder, had then preferred a Special Leave Petition before the Supreme Court of India against the judgement of 2019 which was allowed in it's favour vide judgement dated September 9, 2021.

Accordingly, since the Award of 2017 could be executed as a decree in terms of Section 36 of the Act, the present petition was being filed by DAMEPL for execution of the Award passed by the Arbitral Tribunal.

Case Title: Delhi Airport Metro Express Private Limited v. Delhi Metro Rail Corporation Ltd. 

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