Tuesday 25 May 2021

Whether New Municipal Commissioner can resile from concluded compromise agreement on the ground that the court did not approve it?

 It was thereafter argued that the Standing Committee's resolution was subject to approval of this Court and therefore, till such approval was not granted, the Consent Minutes could not be treated as a concluded contract and resultantly, the new Municipal Commissioner is now free to resile therefrom. When this argument was first canvassed before us, as stated hereinabove, the Respondent opposed such submission stating that this argument was never raised before the learned Single Judge. In order to prevent any ambiguity and in order to save another round of litigation, we thought it fit to direct the parties to approach the learned Single Judge to 4 2015 (4) Mh.LJ 905 5 (2015) 5 SCC 747 6 (1973) 3 SCC 889 7 (1969) 3 SCC 150 to clarify the position in this regard viz. whether or not the said argument was canvassed before the learned Single Judge. As reproduced hereinabove, the learned Single Judge has categorically clarified the position and remarked that the said submission was never made before him. This by itself would be a sufficient ground for us not to even entertain this submission. Be that as it may, even if we were to, the said submission is also misconceived. The conduct of the parties and the Standing Committee resolution are explicit. It cannot be reasonably construed that in the absence of the approval of the learned Single Judge thereon, there was no concluded contract between the parties. The parties had admittedly entered into a concluded contract prior in time. The Consent Minutes were only thereafter, required to be placed before the learned Single Judge so as to enable him to dispose of the Commercial Arbitration Petitions in terms of the said concluded contract. The independent, concluded, anterior and binding legal contract was not conditional and/or contingent upon the approval of the learned Single Judge. It is ridiculous for the Appellant to now contend that the learned Single Judge ought to have considered the merits or otherwise of the Consent Minutes. As stated hereinabove, the reasoning provided by the learned Single Judge whilst construing Order XXIII Rules 1 and 3 is sound and acceptable to us. We therefore, reject this submission of the Appellant. {Para 8.2}

Bombay High Court
Bhiwandi-Nizampur City ... vs Antony Waste Handling Cell Ltd. ... on 5 March, 2021

Bench: S.J. Kathawalla, R. I. Chagla
Read full Judgment here: Click here
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