EOW move to freeze Speak Asia Supreme Court case
For as long as I can remember now senior panelists in Speak Asia have been steadfastly pointing to the Solomon James writ 383 and insisting it will decide the fate of Speak Asia on all fronts.
Given that the Solomon James writ 383 case lodged in the Supreme Court is a civil case revolving around the recovery of money from Speak Asia, I myself have maintained that there is little chance it will have any bearing on the criminal investigations into the company.
This is evidenced by Speak Asia’s (and their sidekicks over at AISPA) multiple cases lodged in a number of courts trying to squash FIRs lodged against the company. The company and their legal team seem to be of the belief that by quashing FIRs against the company will somehow negate the criminal liability of running what has been described as the largest MLM fraud India has ever seen.
A few days ago, one such case originally launched by AISPA (now the Crasto writ 3611), took an interesting turn in that one of the named defendants, Navniit Kkhosla, informed the court he’d received his lost money and in light of this ‘does not wish to pursue the complaint (any further)‘.
As usual, the one-sided biased story put out by Speak Asia, AISPA and their senior panelists was that the FIR had been withdrawn and that a significant obstacle had been overcome.
When the order of the March 15th writ 3611 case was made public an hour or so ago however, not surprisingly it painted an entirely different picture.
As per the order, Kkhosla did indeed inform the court that he had received his invested money. This money was not paid by Speak Asia but rather supposedly by gullible members of the company, who fronted the 606,000 INR ($12,000 USD) sum after the All India SpeakAisa Panelist Association (AISPA) started calling up their members and asking for money.
To observers, this seemed rather strange. Certainly I myself didn’t attempt to second guess why Kkhosla had opted for a payout, nonetheless from other panelists. Revealed in the March 15th order however is also the following:
We are informed by the learned P. P. that they have filed stay application in the Apex Court and the said application is likely tobe heard on 22nd March, 2012.
A stay application of course is an application for a stay of proceedings:
A stay of proceedings is a ruling by the court in civil and criminal procedure, halting further legal process in a trial.
The court can subsequently lift the stay and resume proceedings. However, a stay is sometimes used as a device to postpone proceedings indefinitely.
This brings to light two things.
The first is that the EOW (and other authorities) must believe they have built a strong enough criminal case against Speak Asia to warrant asking the Supreme Court to put a stop to the Solomon James writ 383.
The Solomon James writ 383 case has for the most part been conducted in secrecy of late via mediation meetings. Meetings which, as we understand, have been discussing the payment of money to the 115 signed petitioners, whilst Speak Asia’s senior panelists mislead the rest of the member-base with talk of exit-options and payments for all.
To date no formal court document has acknowledged discussions of payments to all of Speak Asia panelists nor any exit-option put forth by Speak Asia.
To interrupt this process with a stay application indicates that the authorities believe they have an urgent enough reason to approach the court for a stay order. Although what this is, is currently unclear.
The details of the criminal investigation against Speak Asia being conducted by various authorities has been scarce these past few months but now it appears they’re ready to put a stop to civil action regarding payments, presumably in an attempt to shift focus onto the criminal side of things.
I had thought they might wait until the civil action played out but it appears the authorities would rather put a stop to it altogether.
The second point revealed in the stay application is Kkhosla’s payment. I don’t know how much of the EOW investigation Kkhosla is privvy too, but it appears that at least for him, he believed he had a better chance of recovering his money from other panelists (if they were willing to pay him), than by the Supreme Court action.
One possible reason is that whatever the reason the EOW have put forth on their stay application, it is believed that there’s a strong chance it will push through a stay of proceedings on the Solomon James 383 case.
Unfortunately the details of the stay application have not been made public so what the EOW have in mind if they get their stay of proceedings is unclear. If I had to take a guess I’d say that it’s got something to do with their ongoing investigation. Perhaps they’re finally ready to bring about criminal proceedings against Speak Asia and its management.
Of course until the particulars of the stay application are made public, that for now remains just a theory.
In the meantime Kkhosla has recovered his invested money, the signed petitioners of the Solomon James writ 383 now face having their case and potential payouts frozen and the rest of the panelists are still stuck in limbo.
The Mumbai High Court has in the interim set another hearing date for the 27th March in order to observe the success or failure of the EOW’s stay application in the Supreme Court.
The EOW expect their stay of application to be heard in the Solomon James writ 383 case on the 23rd of March in the Supreme Court.