In a setback for Vijaypat Singhania, the Bombay High Court on Thursday restrained sale, circulation and distribution of the former industrialist’s autobiography titled ‘An Incomplete Life’.
Singhania, former chairperson of the Raymond Group, is embroiled in a legal battle with his estranged son Gautam Singhania and the Raymond Company over the release of the book since 2019.
On Thursday, the vacation bench of Justice SP Tavade passed the restraining order. “Persons shall cease and desist from advertising, displaying, writing, editing, printing, authoring, selling, offering for sale, further distribution, or otherwise making available the book directly or indirectly,” reads the order.
Raymond Limited and Gautam Singhania had filed suits in 2019 in the Thane sessions court and a civil court in Mumbai seeking injunction against the book claiming that its contents were defamatory. In April 2019, the Thane court had granted an injunction on the release of the book.
On Thursday, Raymond Limited approached the HC seeking urgent reliefs, claiming that Vijaypat Singhania had “surreptitiously” released the book on Sunday.
They sought that the HC restrain the publishers Macmillan Publishers Pvt Ltd from further distributing, selling or making available the book.
The advocates – Kartik Nayar, Rishab Kumar and Krish Kalra – contended that the senior Singhania and the publishers had breached an April 2019 order issued by a sessions court in Thane district by which an injunction was issued on release of the book.
Nayar argued, “The HC and the Thane sessions court had passed several orders between February 2019 and April 2019 restraining Vijaypat Singhania from publishing or releasing his autobiography… However, the respondents (Singhania and publishers) in wilful disregard to the orders already published the book and put it for sale in the market,” he said.
The petitioners said that they had to approach the HC for urgent relief as the Thane sessions court was shut for Diwali vacation.
The company had claimed that the autobiography infringes upon its right to privacy, defames it and also discusses its business operations and other confidential information.
The suit reads, “The book is also believed to be containing information and details about the confidential arbitration proceedings and other legal proceedings that are on-going between the petitioner’s (Raymond) chairman Gautam Singhania and Vijaypat Singhania.”
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