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2017 (9) TMI 1270 - SUPREME COURT
Corporate insolvency procedure - Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016 - Held that:- Going by the test of “existence of a dispute”, it is clear that without going into the merits of the dispute, the appellant has raised a plausible contention requiring further investigation which is not a patently feeble legal argument or an assertion of facts unsupported by evidence. The defense is not spurious, mere bluster, plainly frivolous or vexatious. A dispute does truly exist in fact between the parties, which may or may not ultimately succeed, and the Appellate Tribunal was wholly incorrect in characterizing the defense as vague, got-up and motivated to evade liability.
Learned counsel for the respondent, however, argued that the breach of the NDA is a claim for unliquidated damages which does not become crystallized until legal proceedings are filed, and none have been filed so far. The period of limitation for filing such proceedings has admittedly not yet elapsed.
Further, the appellant has withheld amounts that were due to the respondent under the NDA till the matter is resolved. Admittedly, the matter has never been resolved. Also, the respondent itself has not commenced any legal proceedings after the e-mail dated 30th January, 2015 except for the present insolvency application, which was filed almost 2 years after the said e-mail. All these circumstances go to show that it is right to have the matter tried out in the present case before the axe falls. We, therefore, allow the present appeal and set aside the judgment of the Appellate Tribunal.