The Competition Commission of India (CCI) on Monday denied leaking any confidential reports as alleged by Google LLC through a plea in Delhi High Court.
CCI through Senior Advocate N Venkataraman told Court that the leak being alleged by Google is not from the CCI and no confidential information regarding the investigation has been leaked from the commission.
A bench of Justice Rekha Palli took on record the statement made by CCI and said nothing survived in the matter.
The court while disposing of the matter granted liberty to Google to approach the Delhi High Court in case of any further leak in the media on confidential aspects of the investigation.
Earlier, Senior Advocate N Venkataraman appeared for CCI in the matter had said that Google should sue media houses that published “so-called confidential reports” in case of any damages.
“We strongly condemn the accusations levelled by Google on a government body. There is no single evidence that we have done it,” submitted the Senior Advocate.
Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi appeared for Google LLC and submitted that CCI is regularly leaking reports, a protective order is needed, there is a direct leakage of the confidential report, which is against the rules.
“This is happening habitually, then what is the need for this confidentiality requirement? There is a complete denial of natural justice,” Mr Singhvi added.
Senior Advocate Arun Kathapalia also appeared along with Mr Singhvi for Google who is the petitioner in the matter.
Tech giant Google last week had filed a writ petition in Delhi High Court alleging a confidential interim fact-finding report submitted by the Director General’s office to the Competition Commission of India relating to an ongoing investigation into Google’s Android smartphone agreements was leaked to the media.
Google in a press statement stated that, on September 18, 2021, a confidential interim fact-finding report was submitted by the Director General’s office to the Competition Commission of India relating to an ongoing investigation into Google’s Android smartphone agreements was leaked to the media. Google has not yet received or reviewed this confidential report, the statement stated.
Commenting on the petition with the high court, a Google spokesperson said, “we are deeply concerned that the Director General’s report, which contains our confidential information in an ongoing case, was leaked to the media while in the CCI’s custody.”