Delhi HC: Why can’t RIL be made a party to Amazon-Future case?

Industry:    3 weeks ago

The Delhi High Court judge hearing half-a-dozen cases in the Amazon-Future Group dispute on Thursday asked why Reliance Industries (RIL) could not be made a party to Amazon’s petition accusing Future Retail of alienating its retail assets in favour of Reliance.

“Reliance is a beneficiary of this transaction,” Justice C Hari Shankar said, referring to Reliance Projects & Property Management terminating the sub-leases of about 800 Future Group stores. The Reliance Industries unit had in February taken possession of these store sites, citing non-payment of rents totalling about Rs 4,800 crore.

“Please tell me how can this application be decided without Reliance being made a party,” Justice Shankar asked Amazon’s counsel, Gopal Subramanium. “I agree with your Lordship that Reliance has to be brought here. There is no question about it,” Subramanium said. The judge deferred further hearing in the case to May 4, without passing any order on Reliance.


As part of the different cases between Amazon and Future Group, the high court was hearing an Amazon plea seeking enforcement of a Singapore arbitral tribunal’s order staying the sale of Future Group’s retail assets to Reliance Retail and another to stop Future Retail from further alienating its assets. Reliance has not been a party to any of the cases.

According to people tracking the matters, Reliance taking over stores is the legal focus for Amazon, after Future lenders last week rejected the deal to sell its retail assets to Reliance Retail.