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Future Retail Limited employees have told the Supreme Court they have been left remediless in the dispute between their company and Amazon despite the orders having a direct and substantial impact on them.
The Future Retail Employee Welfare Association on Tuesday filed a special leave petition in the Supreme Court seeking to intervene in the current proceedings of the company’s dispute with Amazon over its 2019 deal with Reliance.
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The employees’ association has stated that the interests of nearly 27,000 employees of Future Retail have been affected by the orders passed in arbitral proceedings. They say the inordinate delay in the Future-Reliance Retail deal has caused apprehension in employees that the deal may not reach fruition.
“If Reliance were to withdraw from the Scheme, or it is stopped, FRL will be pushed into liquidation, resulting in 27,000 employees losing their livelihoods,” the staff association has claimed.
Future and Amazon have been engaged in a legal tussle since October 2020 with the e-commerce giant approaching the Singapore International Arbitration Centre objecting to a deal between Future Retail and Reliance Retail in 2019.
Amazon is trying to block the sale of Future Group's retail, wholesale, and logistics business to Reliance Industries Ltd for Rs 24,713 crore for allegedly breaking contracts. It has argued the 2019 deal it had with a Future unit contained clauses prohibiting the group from selling its retail assets to anyone on a "restricted persons" list that included Reliance.
The Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC) had on October 21 granted an interim award in favour of Amazon. The order rejected Future Retail's plea to lift the stay on the company's Rs 24,713 crore deal with Reliance Retail. It held that Future Retail was a party to the ongoing arbitration dispute between Amazon and Future Group pertaining to the sale of its assets to Reliance Retail.
Also Read: Amazon moves Supreme Court against Delhi HC order on CAIT plea against CCI in Future deal case
Later, the Delhi High Court (HC) rejected Future’s ad-interim plea seeking a stay of Emergency Arbitrator Order in the case.
The FRL staff’s petition to the Supreme Court states that employees have been left remediless in the dispute between their company and Amazon despite the orders having a direct and substantial impact on employees.
It added that the COVID-19 pandemic has severely affected Future Retail and employees’ salaries have been cut by 40- 50 percent and medical insurance benefits have also not been renewed.
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(Edited by : Kanishka Sarkar)
First Published: Nov 23, 2021 2:52 PM IST