NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court has put on hold a trial court order summoning online travel company Make My Trip’s (MMT) CEO Deep Kalra in a cheating case filed by a lawyer. Justice Anu Malhotra issued the interim direction on Kalra’s plea seeking quashing of the trial court order dated March 3, 2020 and proceedings emanating from it.
The court also issued notice to the state and the lawyer, who had lodged the cheating complaint against MMT, its CEO and a company employee, seeking their response on Kalra’s plea by February 10, the next date of hearing. “The matter be re-notified for February 10, till which date the impugned order against the applicant (Kalra) is stayed,” the court said.
Kalra was represented by senior advocate Vikas Pahwa, who told the high court that the police filed a closure report in the case in 2017 saying there was insufficiency of evidence, the grievance of the complainant-lawyer was a consumer dispute and there was no concealment.
The complainant-lawyer had filed a cheating complaint with the police alleging that MMT, its CEO and one of its employees, who had planned his holiday package, conspired to cheat him, Kalra’s plea, filed through advocates Ridhima Mandhar and Kartik Khanna, has said.
Pahwa told the court that after carrying out an initial enquiry, the police had in 2014 said the dispute was purely of civil nature and no cognisable offence was made out.
Despite that report, the magisterial court had directed registration of an FIR and therefore the FIR for the offences of cheating and criminal conspiracy was lodged against MMT, Kalra and the employee who had planned the holiday for the complainant-lawyer, the petition has said.
The complainant-lawyer had in 2019 filed a protest petition against the police’s closure report. It said that in March last year, the trial court allowed the plea and summoned the company, Kalra and the employee. “Hence, the present petition for quashing the trial court order was filed,” it said.