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NCLT directs McDonald’s to reply show cause notice for contempt

The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) on Monday directed the US-based McDonald’s Corp to submit a reply to the show cause notice issued by it over a contempt plea filed by the fast food chain’s estranged joint-venture partner Vikram Bakshi.

A two-member bench of the NCLT headed by its President Justice M M kumar listed the matter for hearing on February 7, 2018. The tribunal has restarted the proceedings in the contempt plea against McDonald’s Corp and its Indian subsidiary McDonald’s India Pvt Ltd (MIPL) after a go ahead by the Delhi High Court. The high court in November had put a stay on the NCLT notice after McDonald’s challenged the order.

Earlier this month, the high court dismissed the McDonald’s plea challenging the NCLT notice on a contempt plea filed by Bakshi. Bakshi had moved the contempt plea in September 2017 alleging that the fast-food major’s decision to terminate his franchise licence with regard to 169 outlets run by their 50- 50 joint venture Connaught Plaza Restaurant Ltd (CPRL) violated the NCLT order of July 13, 2017.

The NCLT by its order had reinstated him as the Managing Director of CPRL and refrained the US-based food giant from interfering in its functioning. Bakshi has been at loggerheads with the fast-food chain over the management of CPRL after he was ousted from the post of MD of the McDonald’s franchisee in August 2013.

McDonald’s India had asked CPRL not to use its brand system, trademark, designs and associated intellectual property among other things, within 15 days of the termination notice, which had expired on September 6, 2017. Bakshi had moved the NCLT following termination of the licence by McDonald’s India Pvt Ltd (MIPL).

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