SC ruling limited to interim relief, didn't decide merits of our appeal: Google

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New Delhi, Jan 20: Google on Friday said that they are reviewing the Supreme Court's decision, after the apex court declined to entertain a plea by the tech giant challenging a National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) order, which refused to stay operation of the Competition Commission of India (CCI) order imposing Rs 1337.76 crore fine on the tech giant.

A company spokesperson said in a statement that the decision "is limited to interim relief and did not decide the merits of our appeal".

"Android has greatly benefited Indian users, developers, and OEMs and played a key role in India's digital transformation. We remain committed to our users and partners and will cooperate with the CCI on the way forward, in parallel with our appeal," a Google spokesperson said.

A bench, headed by Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and comprising Justices P.S. Narasimha and J.B. Pardiwala said the findings by the CCI cannot be said to be "without jurisdiction or with manifest error" and affirmed the NCLAT order. declining to grant interim relief to Google.

The bench directed the NCLAT to dispose of Google's appeal by March 31, and granted Google seven days to deposit 10 per cent of the penalty imposed by the CCI.

On January 11, the Supreme Court agreed to examine an appeal by Google against a decision by NCLAT, declining to stay a Rs 1,337.76 crore penalty imposed on it by the CCI for alleged anti-competitive practices.

Google moved the apex court after the setback at the NCLAT, which did not stay the CCI order on abuse of dominant position in multiple markets in the Android mobile device ecosystem case. Earlier this month, the NCLAT did not find any urgency to pass an interim order, after noting that Google filed the appeal in December last year, though the CCI passed the order in October. It directed Google to deposit 10 per cent of the fine amount.

The CCI also imposed a penalty of Rs 936.44 crore on Google in a separate case for abusing its dominant position with respect to its Play Store policies.

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