In a major turn- around Bombay Dyeing Chairman Nusli Wadia withdrew all defamation cases including the Rs 3,000 crore suit for damages against Tata group Chairman Emeritus Ratan Tata and others.
A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde allowed Wadia to withdraw the petition in the apex court after the court recorded that Tata and others had no intention to defame him (Wadia).
“In view of the statement made by Tata that there was no intention to defame Wadia, which is in accordance with the finding of the high court, the petitioner is hereby allowed to withdraw the present petition as well as the pending suit for damages,” the bench said.
The top court told senior advocate C A Sundaram, appearing for Wadia, that court appreciates his client for the response.
The top court had on January 6 asked Wadia and Tata to sit together and resolve their differences in the defamation case.
Wadia had filed a criminal defamation case against Ratan Tata and other directors of Tata Sons in 2016 after he was voted out of the boards of some Tata Group companies.
The bench, also comprising Justices B R Gavai and Surya Kant, which was initially inclined to dispose of the matter while upholding the finding of Bombay High Court that there was no intention of defamation, adjourned the matter for January 13, after counsel for Wadia said that he would like to seek instruction from his client on the separate suit filed in the matter.
Wadia had moved the apex court challenging the Bombay High Court order of last year, quashing proceedings initiated by a Mumbai local court against Tata, Tata Sons’ current chief N Chandrasekaran and eight directors in a criminal defamation case filed by him.
On December 15, 2018, a magistrate court in Mumbai had issued notices to Tata and the others in the case.
Wadia filed the defamation case in 2016 after he was voted out of the boards of some Tata Group companies, and claimed that Tata and others made defamatory statements against him after they removed Cyrus Mistry on October 24, 2016 as the chairman of Tata Sons.
Tata and others had then approached the high court seeking to quash and set aside the proceedings initiated against them.