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Supreme Court allows GMR to operate Nagpur airport

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Upholds Bombay HC order that set aside decision by a joint venture to cancel the bidding process

The Supreme Court has allowed the GMR Group to operate Nagpur’s Babasaheb Ambedkar International Airport. The apex court on Monday upheld a Bombay High Court order that quashed a March 2020 communication issued by a joint venture firm cancelling an award granted to GMR Airports for upgrade and operation of the airport.

MIHAN, a JV between the Maharashtra Airport Development Company and Airports Authority of India, had moved the Supreme Court after the High Court order.

In accordance with law

A bench of Justices Vineet Saran and JK Maheshwari said the HC judgment is based on the sound reasoning and true analysis of facts, which do not warrant interference. “We are of the considered opinion that the findings recorded by the High Court allowing the writ petition are in accordance with law. Those findings do not suffer from any illegality, warranting interference by this court in exercise of the power under Article 136 of the Constitution of India. All these appeals are hereby dismissed,” the bench said.

GMR had emerged as the highest bidder in the tender process conducted by MIHAN India Limited for the Nagpur Airport in 2019. The Letter of Award was issued to GMR in March 2019. However, Government of Maharashtra decided to cancel the tender process in March 2020 and MIHAN India Limited issued a Letter annulling the bid process. The GMR Group operates Delhi and Hyderabad airports and is constructing a new one at Goa and at Bhogapuram (Andhra Pradesh).

Published on May 10, 2022

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