By Suneet Kumar By | 09 June 2018 04:58:58The Indian government has sought a stay on the arbitration ruling by multinational arbitration company Navigant, a US company, in its $1.3 billion settlement with the government of Gujarat, which it has accused of instigating communal violence in 2008.
The case, in which Navigants lawyers have sought a five-year stay of the arbitration verdict in the US court of appeals for the Second Circuit, has triggered the biggest legal standoff between the two countries.
The dispute centres on the question of how much Navigans lawyers should be allowed to extract from the government, which they allege is guilty of communal violence.
“We have asked the court to stay Navigantic’s arbitral order and we will appeal against the stay,” said Sanjay Kumar, a lawyer for Naviganta.
The dispute began after the Gujarat government filed a civil lawsuit against Navigance in 2008, alleging the company had instigated communal violence and other abuses in the state’s Gujarat district during 2008-09.
In 2014, the court dismissed Navigances claim, ruling that the Gujarat State High Court had jurisdiction over the Gujarat case, which the Gujarat state government had brought in 2009.
Navigant is based in San Francisco, California.
A Navigante spokesperson declined to comment.
The Gujarat government has denied all allegations against it, and said it has not received a response to the civil suit filed by Navigantes lawyers.
The Gujarat government also has not released any documents related to the case, the spokesperson said.
The civil lawsuit has been filed by Gujarat’s top lawyer and two former judges.
The two judges in the case were appointed by the Congress government.
In a statement, Naviganti, which is part of NavigANT, said that the court had “declared that the civil litigation was without merit”.
The Navigancans lawyers said they had filed their civil lawsuit in August, and sought a court order in the matter, which was issued on Wednesday.
The civil suit, they said, sought to “stop the government from extracting from Navigancy the maximum amount it wants”.
The civil case is being heard by the Supreme Court of India, which has jurisdiction over Gujarat, a state with one of the largest Muslim populations in the country.
The government has argued that Navigantics case was brought by the US firm and was filed without the approval of the government in a US court.
In its statement, the Navigantis lawyers said the Indian government had refused to give Navigands lawyers the opportunity to make a response and was “not in a position to do so”.
They added that “the court must not allow Naviganda to use its jurisdiction to interfere with Navigancers legal rights” and that the Indian authorities should “resolve the matter by seeking to have the matter stayed by the Indian courts”.
The court has yet to take up the case.