The order was delivered by Justice D G Karnik on a petition filed by Percept D'mark, challenging Zaheer's move to approach Bhupati's firm that had given him a new offer after his earlier contract with Percept D'mark expired.
The Judge upheld the contention of Percept D'mark's counsel Virag Tulsapurkar that the sports management company had the right of first refusal as per the agreement between it and the cricketer.
Tulsapurkar argued that as per the agreement, Percept D'mark had to be given an opportunity to match the offer made by Bhupati's new firm. In this case, this was not done and Zaheer had approached Globosport directly after his contract expired with Percept D'mark for business promotion.
Bhupati's lawyer Janak Dwarkadas argued that such a clause in the contract providing for first right of refusal to Percept D'mark was absurd and invalid in law as the agreement had expired and Zaheer is free to tie up with any firm, he argued.
Zaheer's lawyers Iqbal Chhagla supported arguments of Bhupati's firm saying such a clause amounted to binding down Zaheer to Percept D'mark indefinitely. It is not valid in law and so he should be allowed to tie up with 'Globosports', he said.