Supreme Court Reserves Order on Skoda Volkswagen India over Cheating Devices in VehiclesThe Supreme Court on Wednesday reserved its verdict on the FIR lodged against Skoda Volkswagen India Pvt Ltd challenging an FIR registered in Uttar Pardesh over alleged cheat emission devices installed in the cars. While hearing the case Chief Justice of India Hon'ble Justice SA Bobde remarked that when...
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Supreme Court Reserves Order on Skoda Volkswagen India over Cheating Devices in Vehicles
The Supreme Court on Wednesday reserved its verdict on the FIR lodged against Skoda Volkswagen India Pvt Ltd challenging an FIR registered in Uttar Pardesh over alleged cheat emission devices installed in the cars. While hearing the case Chief Justice of India Hon'ble Justice SA Bobde remarked that when a complainant alleges cheating, he should face investigation. The FIR was based on the same allegations that are now sub-judice in the Supreme Court.
Lawyer Abhishek Manu Singhvi, appearing for the company, contended that the NGT had imposed a fine of Rs 500 crore on his party, which has been banned by the Supreme Court. Now an FIR has been registered and the names of Indian and German officers were present in it.
Earlier, the Allahabad High Court had refused to quash the FIRs filed against Skoda Auto, Volkswagen and Audi. In an alleged case of 'cheating devices' in its vehicles to show low emissions, the court rejected the company's plea that whether the company's vehicles meet BS-IV criteria is a matter of investigation. In fact, Noida's local businessman Aniljit Singh said in his complaint that he was sold 'substandard' vehicles after misinterpretation of the facts on emissions.
"Previously in December, 2015, a lade had made a complainant against the Volkwagen in NGT. In 2018 the, the persons came to be largely exonerated. Despite that, in March 2019, a penalty was imposed on Volkswagen, which was then stayed by Your Lordships on May 6, 2019", stated the Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi for the petitioner.
Chief Justice SA Bobde asked: "How can a general order of stay on NGT prevent an FIR based on a personal complaint? The NGT order is not about the particular car bought by the complainant."
Advocate A.M. Singhvi clarified that the NGT order was with respect to the engine of the car. He said the allegations put up before the NGT were that the engines in Volkswagen cars have cheat devices and caused environmental damages. "The FIR lists foreign officers in Germany, Japan, etc," Singhvi added.
Advocate Singhvi further referred to the 1987 order of the SC in Sardool Singh and cited that it was the opinion of the court that where the civil court is seized of the validity of the will and matter is sub-judice. No criminal prosecution can commence on the allegation that the will was forced.
Senior Advocate Maninder Singh, for the complainant, said that the complaint is about a personal grievance with respect to his seven cars. The NGT will not investigate the criminal aspect.
He alleged that in 2016, cars were purchased at a cost of crores of rupees. He accused the car manufacturers of conforming the vehicles to new standards and motivating them to buy. He said that he bought these vehicles assuming that they have been prepared according to the new emission standards of the country. Singh said in his complaint, "These were inferior vehicles, equipped with deception devices." Advocate Singh further added.
In conclusion, the Supreme Court reserved its order with respect to the plea by filed by Skoda Volkswagen challenging FIR on Allegations of Emission Cheating.