India loses big arbitration case, will have to pay $1 billion as compensation

After International Chamber of Commerce Tribunal slapped fine of Rs 4,400 Cr, the decision of the International Tribunal upholding Devas multimedia's case is a huge set back for India

India loses big arbitration case, will have to pay $1 billion as compensation

The International Tribunal in Hague has ruled against India in a case involving Antirx, the commercial arm of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) . Devas Multimedia has filed a case against Antirx.

Antrix had cancelled a contract  with Devas multimedia for leasing two satellites operating in S-band spectrum. The contract was scrapped in 2011.

Devas Multimedia approached the International Tribunal in 2015. India may have to pay $1 billion as compensation.

The tribunal in its order has said that by unilaterally cancelling the contract Antrix has caused inordinate loses to the investors of Devas Multimedia.

The decision of the court could damage India's reputation among international investors, analysts say.

The contract was cancelled by the Antrix under controversial circumstances.

CBI had registered a case against ISRO officials and Devas officials alleging wrongful deal of Rs 578 Cr. had accrued to the Devas from the agreement.

CBI had questioned former ISRO chairman K Radhakrishnan and G. Madhavan Nair as part of the investigation .

International Chamber of Commerce Tribunal last year slapped a fine of  Rs 4,400 Cr. fine on Antrix for unilaterally annulling the contract.

Welcoming the Tribunal order Devas Multimedia chairman Lawrence Babbio said that until a mutually agreeable solution emerges the company will continue to press their demands before international tribunals and courts around the world .

“Devas committed to partner with Antrix on a hybrid satellite-terrestrial infrastructure project to bring nationwide satellite/terrestrial broadband wireless access and audio visual services to India. With today’s  (Monday's) PCA award, two international tribunals have now unanimously agreed that financial compensation should be paid after the annulment of Devas's rights,Other courts in France and the United Kingdom have agreed that the award against Antrix ought to be enforced. We prefer a mutually agreeable resolution of this matter. But until that occurs, Devas and its investors will continue to press their claims before international tribunals and in courts around the world"  Babbio said in the statement posted on the company website.

It was during the tenure of  the G. Madhavan Nair the agreement was reached between Antrix  and Devas. The government blacklisted Madhavan Nair and two other scientists after two panels probed the deal. These scientists were also barred from taking up any government positions in future.