McDonald’s can fight Bakshi case abroad, says CLB
THE Company Law Board on Monday rejected Vikram Bakshi’s plea seeking a stay on foreign arbitration proceedings initiated by McDonald’s India over disputes, including his reinstatement as MD of Connaught Plaza Restaurants, reports Kaushal Shroff in New Delhi.
New Delhi, Dec 30: The Company Law Board (CLB) on Monday rejected Vikram Bakshi’s plea seeking a stay on foreign arbitration proceedings initiated by McDonald’s India (MIPL) in respect of the unresolved disputes between the two, which includes the question of Bakshi’s reinstatement as the MD of Connaught Plaza Restaurants (CPRL).
The partnership between the US fast-food chain and Bakshi is housed in CPRL.
Bakshi’s term as CPRL MD expired on July 17. Soon after, problems between the partners surfaced. On August 30, McDonald’s issued notices in select newspapers saying Bakshi had ceased to be the MD of CPRL. In early September, Bakshi moved the CLB for his reinstatement as MD of CPRL.
Subsequently, on November 28, while an application from Bakshi seeking his reinstatement as MD was still pending before the CLB, MI- PL terminated the JV agreement, and on the next day, the company, via e-mail, submitted an application to the London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA) seeking arbitration of the dispute between the parties.
After receiving MIPL’s application, LCIA shot off a notice to Bakshi directing him to nominate an arbitrator by December 28. However, Bakshi chose not to nominate an arbitrator.
As per the rules of LCIA and the arbitration clause of the JV agreement, Bakshi’s opportunity to nominate an arbitrator for himself has been “irrevocably waived” and henceforth, the LCIA will take upon itself the responsibility to nominate an arbitrator for Bakshi.