INOX v. PVR | Del HC | No plea of tortious inducement made out; Finding of judicial adventurism and imposition of five lakhs against INOX, not warranted

Delhi High Court: A Division Bench of Manmohan and Sanjeev Narula, JJ., held that neither the finding of judicial adventurism nor imposing costs of Rs 5 lacs is warranted against INOX Leisure Limited.

Issue

The present appeal was filed to challenge the final Judgment and Order passed on 18th May, 2020 wherein the appellant-plaintiff’s suit was dismissed at the pre-trial stage.

Senior Counsel for the appellant-plaintiff, Amit Sibal submitted that the impugned order had erroneously imposed the cost of Rs 5 Lakhs upon the appellant-plaintiff, even when, concept of tortious inducement/ interference of binding agreements is known to constitute a cause of action to file a suit for injunction.

Further he contended that the Single judge had erroneously held that appellant-plaintiff indulged in ‘judicial adventurism’ inasmuch as the said expression is used in respect of judicial overreach by a judicial authority and same cannot be attributed to a litigant.

He lastly submitted that a coordinate Division Bench of this Court in Amazon Seller Services Pvt. Ltd. v. Modicare Ltd., FAO (OS) No. 135/2019 decided on 31st January, 2020 — held that an action for tortiuous interference is a matter of evidence.

Counsel for the respondent-defendant submitted that appellant-plaintiff by filing the present suit cannot seek waiver of cost as well as expunction of the ‘judicial adventurism’ remark.

Court’s Opinion

High Court stated that no plea of tortiuous inducement/ interference of binding agreement is made out in the present suit, yet the concept was well-known in law to constitute a cause of action to file a suit for damages/injunction.

Thus, agreeing with the decision in Modicare Ltd. v. Gautam Bali, 2019 SCC OnLine Del 10511 Court  held that Single Judge did not dismiss the present suit on the ground of suppression of material facts or on the ground that the appellant-plaintiff had filed parallel or multiple proceedings on the same cause of action.

“..neither the finding of ‘judicial adventurism’ nor the imposition of costs is warranted in the present case.”

Hence, the present appeal and application was disposed in view of the aforesaid modification. [INOX Leisure Ltd. v. PVR Ltd., 2020 SCC OnLine Del 673, decided on 24-06-2020]

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