Bangalore International Airport Limited duty free award dispute to be heard on 24 March – 07/03/09

INDIA. The Supreme Court will reconvene on 24 March to consider the fate of the duty free contract at Bengaluru International Airport near Bangalore.

India’s ultimate legal authority was due to rule on 3 March on Bangalore International Airport Limited’s (BIAL) challenge to last year’s Karnataka High Court overruling of BIAL’s duty free contract award to The Nuance Group and Shoppers’ Stop.

The Karnataka High Court decision, mirroring a similar Bombay High Court ruling in Mumbai last year, had allowed a petition by Flemingo Duty Free Shops Pvt Ltd seeking for the award to be quashed. Flemingo had alleged that it was wrongly excluded from both tender shortlists.

On Monday 16 February the Supreme Court declined to grant a stay of execution to BIAL and listed the matter to be reconvened on 3 March for a final hearing. Now the fate of one of India’s most important airport retail contracts will be decided later this month.

As we have reported, the respective High Courts ruled that both Mumbai International Airport Limited and BIAL were “˜state’ bodies (and therefore bound by certain obligations in the contractual process), despite their public-private-partnership ownership models. On 19 December 2008 the Karnataka High Court set aside the BIAL award and directed BIAL to issue a fresh tender within 45 days.

A new tender is shaping as increasingly likely. In that case incumbent Bengaluru International Airport duty free retailer The Nuance Group/Shoppers’ Stop would almost certainly seek compensation.

NOTE: The Moodie Report India, part of our dedicated regional news section on this website, contains all stories on India’s travel retail industry dating back to early 2003. You can access it via the dropdown menu on our home page under Regional News or by simply clicking here.



Bangalore Airport duty free dispute set for March resolution; ITDC tagged to Flemingo Duty Free Shops case – 18/02/09

Supreme Court grants stay of execution for Bangalore duty free award reversal – but only for ten days – 08/02/09

Bengaluru International Airport spurred by new User Development Fee for domestic departing passengers – 12/01/09

Bangalore International Airport Limited reviews options after Flemingo court victory – 07/01/09

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