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Updated: April 4, 2014 17:23 IST

Summoning Samsung chief extreme step, to hurt investment: Sharma

PTI
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A file picture of Union Commerce and Indsutries Minister Anand Sharma. Photo: Sushil Kumar Verma.
The Hindu A file picture of Union Commerce and Indsutries Minister Anand Sharma. Photo: Sushil Kumar Verma.

Describing Supreme Court’s direction asking Samsung Electronics Chairman Lee Kun-hee to appear before a Ghaziabad court in a cheating case an “extreme step”, Commerce and Industry Minister Anand Sharma on Friday said it would adversely impact investment and business climate.

“Samsung is one of the largest companies of Korea and it has huge presence and investments in India...it sends a very negative message and will definitely adversely impact the investment and business climate.

“But the courts have to take a view. I feel that such extreme steps will send shockwaves amongst the corporate world. That should be avoided. The concerned authorities need to be very careful and exercise caution,” he said.

Earlier in the week, Supreme Court had directed Samsung Electronics Chairman Lee Kun-hee to appear before a Ghaziabad court in a $1.4 million cheating case filed against him.

Mr. Sharma said companies function in an executive hierarchical manner and their chairmen should not be summoned in case of complaints. “This is my view...it sends a very negative message,” he added.

Meanwhile, B D Park, Managing Director, Samsung India and and CEO of company’s south-west Asia operations, met DIPP Secretary Amitabh Kant. He was accompanied by Samsung India Deputy Managing Director Ravinder Zutshi.

A Supreme Court bench had passed the order on an appeal filed by Mr. Lee challenging the Allahabad High Court’s order dismissing his plea for setting aside arrest warrant issued against him.

The order was passed on a complaint filed by an Indian company, JCE Consultancy, against Mr. Lee in the Ghaziabad court for allegedly cheating it of $1.4 million.

Mr. Lee had then approached the high court and the Supreme Court for quashing of FIR against him but his plea was rejected by both the courts earlier.

The trial court, thereafter, issued arrest warrant against him for not appearing before it in the case.

There is nothing wrong in calling samsung as far as samsung is doing
business in India and court believes that there is enough reason. Why
Sahara boss is in Jail ?.court felt it correct. Business people think
that they are mightier than law and escape any situation with their
money power. This tendency should be checked.

from:  Mohan
Posted on: Apr 5, 2014 at 20:43 IST

Minister's comments are worth taking note and they should have been
well represented in court. It depends on the scale of crime.
Commenting on court action is not right on part of the Minister. Law
of the land is supreme, however big the accused. In fact,law should be
more stringent on the creamy layer of the society which gives credence
to the law enforcement. Just because it involved big people and USA,
even though 25000 lives have been lost, no justice is done in Bhopal
gas tragedy. When BP mishap happened on the shores of USA effecting
their aqua culture, BP is made to pay huge amount to US government by
none other than OBAMA with direct involvement. Law should favor the
underprivileged and not the privileged.

from:  Dr.Raghavaiah
Posted on: Apr 5, 2014 at 16:46 IST

We trust our judicial system. India should keep up the boldness to summon the
CEOs for the crime and set example for the other companies.

It should do the same for all bribery cases from defense purchase to mining,
telecom scams. Let the CEOs be accountable so that they should not do any more
crimes.

We are failed to elect good politicians as we have corrupted parties. Alteast we
should punish foreign entities for their crime.

We do not need them in fact they need India as we are the 3rd biggest market.

from:  Sankar
Posted on: Apr 5, 2014 at 07:40 IST

This shows how capitalistic the congress has become. Even the most capitalistic countries
don't let corporate executives run unaccountable. It is upto Samsung to come clean in this
case. I think Sharmaji needs to be reminded of how consumers are more important than FIIs.
Same capitalistic America fined McDonald's heavily for serving a customer extra hot drink
that burnt the mouth. I'm sure our Indian authorities would have rejected such an incident
as negligent way of drinking by the customer and not the liability of the restaurant. Long way
to go here to establish consumer rights. SC has taken a right step in the right direction, let's
welcome the judgement.

from:  Pravin Mani
Posted on: Apr 5, 2014 at 05:13 IST

As per our constitution, Rule of Law applies to everyone, mean to say everyone is equal before law (Rich or Poor), so there should not be any favourtism, i think court has given the right decision
and it strengthens value of our Judicial system in common man.

from:  ravi
Posted on: Apr 5, 2014 at 00:07 IST

what Mr.Sharma thinking abt Samsung chief ? is he a God ? No - under the sun all are equal-Before the court all are equal- The culprits/forgery fellows/cheaters/all have to come to court to answer the questions of judiciary-no excuse or relaxation-Be put this mind

from:  vimala vidya
Posted on: Apr 4, 2014 at 23:57 IST

The Minister stetement that the companies function in hierarchical manner and chairman should not be summoned sounds interesting. If that be the case the top boss of Union Carbide should not have been prosecuted after Bhopal Gas episode.

from:  Swami
Posted on: Apr 4, 2014 at 22:15 IST

Here we go again. Too big to arrest and too big to fail. If the case
is genuine, then this is another bogus statement. The gentleman (or
not), was actually charged in his own country for corrupt practices.

At least on the face of it, looks like a genuine case, and our
minister is saying "it will frighten off investors". If the case is
true, then let them be frightened off. India has survived without them
for many years, survived well. If foreign investment means, bending
the law, then let us not kid ourselves. It should not happen.

If this is not undermining the judiciary, I do not know what it is.

Capitalism is Socialism of the enterprise. Socialism is Capitalism of
the Government.

from:  Nagarajan
Posted on: Apr 4, 2014 at 20:42 IST

This is a case of presiding officers becoming too emotional. the question is if there were cheating as alleged was it that the Samsung President did it in his personal capacity. I doubt it very much. This issue of vicarious liablity has no standing in this matter. The person who was cheated should identify the person who cheated him by name and he should appear before the court, and not the President of the Samsung. The law is clear culpability can only be proved as against the person who fulfills all element of the crimes. I doubt it if it was fulfilled in this case.

from:  bala
Posted on: Apr 4, 2014 at 19:43 IST

I think there is nothin wrong in summoning Samsung Chief. Our Nation is not only land for making money by froeing investment. Sharma bothered about investors not about consumers. If we follow him our nation will be the land in the globe to sell all leftout rubbish products. Finally politicians will gain whereas common-man are losers as consumers.

from:  Saravana Kumar
Posted on: Apr 4, 2014 at 19:12 IST

Law of the land is to be respected.Why Mr Sharma is worried about them for the best reason known to him.The company will be given enough opportunity to prove their rights.Actually it will create more trust by the investors and it is good in the liberalized economy of the country.

from:  santhanam
Posted on: Apr 4, 2014 at 18:41 IST

I do not think we should mock US courts or act funnily like Preet Barara and Co. A cheating
case is a really silly to summon the CEO of Samsung from Korea. There are local country
heads who can be punished for 1.5 M. I think our judicial system, after having to deal with a
plethora of silly PIL's is not able to make out the difference between such cases.

from:  Gautham
Posted on: Apr 4, 2014 at 18:38 IST

I do not know about the details of the case. But, it is for the courts to excise caution before passing of such orders. It is also a ground reality that the day to day functioning of such huge firms as 'Samsung' in this case, are not directly looked after by the Chairman. In this context, the views of the Union Minister is to be only accepted.

from:  Rajkumar
Posted on: Apr 4, 2014 at 18:16 IST

So, the respected minister proposes 2 different judicial system, one for common man and one for rich business people? a fraud of 1.4 million is worth arresting and asking him to appear in the court is nothing wrong.

from:  Prabu
Posted on: Apr 4, 2014 at 17:53 IST

There is nothing wrong in summoning the chairman to a court as long as the reasons are legitimate. It does not hurt sentiment! On the contrary, it gives more confidence to the investors about the judicial system.
About summoning the chairman, a recent example is that of Toyota chairman being summoned to a congressional hearing in the US due to some fault in the breaking system in one of the models of their cars!
I don't understand why we have to consider ourselves lowly in any way and say that summoning their chairman would hurt the investor sentiment.

from:  Dheeraj
Posted on: Apr 4, 2014 at 17:33 IST
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