Adani Ports moves SC against HC’s tender disqualification

The firm has also challenged the Rs 5 cost imposed by the high court.
Representative image
Representative image

NEW DELHI: Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd has moved the Supreme Court, challenging the Bombay High Court order, which declined to entertain its plea against the disqualification of its bid in a tender issued by the Board of Trustees of Jawaharlal Nehru Port Authority (JNPA).

The firm has also challenged the Rs 5 cost imposed by the high court.

Senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi mentioned the plea before a vacation bench of Justices Surya Kant and J.B. Pardiwala, and sought urgent hearing on the matter.

The tender was issued by the JNPA for upgradation of its container terminal in Navi Mumbai. Singhvi submitted his client is India’s leading port manager and the firm was cleared as a bidder, however, later, it was disqualified. As the bench asked him to mention the matter before its Registry, Singhvi cited the high court order and added they are offering the bid again.

“There is extraordinary urgency.... Kindly list the matter tomorrow (Wednesday),” he submitted. However, the bench asked him to mention before the Registry for listing.

Singhvi then urged the top court to pass an order to restrain the authorities concerned from proceeding on the judgment. “Please order the same subject to the registry, we will satisfy the Registrar too...,” he said. But, the bench reiterated that Singhvi should go to the Registry first. The Bombay High Court had said that the petitioner brought an unmeritorious case for adjudication, and imposed Rs 5 lakh cost.

The firm had contended before the high court that its disqualification by the JNPA was “illegal and in violation of fundamental and legal rights and urged the court to issue directions to restrain the Board from declaring the highest bidder”.

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