Baseline Venture (India) Pvt Ltd won its case against the Volleyball Federation of India (VFI) after the federation had unfairly terminated the deal according to Baseline. The VFI was ordered to pay Rs 4 crores as compensation and Rs 5 lakhs as legal fees. For that, a further 12 percent interest is payable from the date of start of the arbitral process to the date of settlement. This amounts to nearly an extra Rs 45 lakhs in interest payments as of Monday.
The verdict was delivered by Justice K Kannan (Retd.) after nearly ten months of hearings and representations by all sides. All of the claims raised by VFI against Baseline surrounding the violation of the contract were ignored and it was categorically confirmed that the termination of the contract was not warranted in the light of the publication.
The judgment also denied the counterclaim of Rs. 14.93 Crores brought by the VFI against Baseline Projects.
Speaking on the occasion, Basel’s Vice President Joy Bhattacharjya, who led the league for his first season, said it was a “victory for fair play in Indian sport.”
“This judgment is a total vindication of the fact that the VFI had absolutely no grounds to terminate the contract after a successful season. It’s important that they are held accountable not just to us, but to all the volleyball players and coaches who were the most impacted by their willful actions. This is a victory for fair play in Indian sport,” Bhattacharjya said in a statement.
Baseline Initiatives are to hand over the PVL IPR to the VFI. Tuhin Mishra, co-founder and managing director of Baseline Ventures, said When we began court action, we had the choice of whether we wanted our rights to conduct and the league business to be returned apart from the losses we were looking at.
Given the capricious nature of VFI’s actions over the past year, we had almost no hope that this kind of occurrence would not happen again, considering that the federation’s brazen show of unfaithful purpose and more precious money would be wasted to all stakeholders, including Baseline, who were paying crores of money to be affiliated with the league.
So, well before the trial, we willingly gave up the prospect of recovering our rights. We are delighted to sign over the emblem rights to VFI, we just want our damages to be compensated before any trade deals are implemented by VFI.”
On the grounds of an earlier decision, VFI had to pay Rs 2.25 crores to Baseline, which was obtained in February 2020.