Dhoni stumps Mysore Sandal makers

Indian cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has just won another battle, this time off the ground.

Dhoni was signed up brand ambassador of Mysore  Sandal soap in 2006. DH PHOTO

Dhoni on Wednesday defeated the State-owned Karnataka Soaps and Detergents Limited (KSDL) in a five-year-long legal wrangle, with the arb­i­trator, former Karnataka High Court judge Justice R Gururajan, ruling in favour of the cri­cketer.

The KSDL had dragged Dhoni to the court alleging that he had violated the terms and conditions of an advertisement contract, which he had signed in 2006. The arbitrator also rejected KSDL’s demand for Rs 6.5 crore in damages.

According to Manjunath Paranjape, power of attorney holder for Dhoni, the arbitrator rejected the claim of Rs 6.5 crore in damages by the KSDL, which had cited a loss of reven­ue after Dhoni allegedly br­eached a two-year contract he signed with it in January 2006.

Dhoni was served with a court notice following a petition by the KSDL, which had also claimed that Dhoni did not furnish the Rs 40-lakh compensation after he “breached” the two-year contract.
The KSDL had contended that the cricketer had not given even 10 days of promotional work. Following this, his contract was terminated in December 2007.

High Court judge Justice

Abdul Nazeer, who heard the matter, had on mutual consensus appointed Justice Gururajan arbitrator to resolve the matter in 2009.

The arbitrator had conducted 17 hearings. According to Dhoni’s counsel, the KSDL’s claim was rejected as “necessary documents” were not furnished before the arbitrator.

“Though the KSDL claimed that as per the Nielson report (an Australian company which did a market survey of KSDL) the State-owned company had suffered severe losses after Dhoni failed to appear for the shoot. However, the company could not prove this during the arbitration,” said Paranjape.

As per the agreement and the promotion endorsement, between January 2006 and December 2007, Dhoni was to make himself available for five shoots. “Out of these, he appeared for three shoots. Two events were cancelled.

On one occasion, Dhoni was supposed to attend an emergency meeting of the Board of Control for Cricket in India in Mumbai. And on the second occasion, the KSDL itself cancelled the shoot stating that the managing director was out of station,” Paranjape added.

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