Court restrains DCSL, agents
Colombo District Judge K. Sumitrapala issued an enjoining order on Thursday restraining the Distilleries Company of Sri Lanka (DCSL) and its agents from intimidating, threatening or preventing licensed liquor dealers from purchasing liquor manufactured by W.M. Mendis and Company.

The application was filed by Ms. W.M. Mendis and Co. alleging that DCSL, whose area managers were all retired military personnel, threatened wine store owners to abstain from purchasing any liquor manufactured by W.M. Mendis and Co.

The company claims that over the last thirty years, due to its superior grade of liquor, it obtained a fair sales percentage in the retail market, and therefore this intimidation. It claimed that DCSL, through its agents, threatened the liquor dealers that DCSL would not supply them with any liquor manufactured by them, which has a very large retail market, if they purchased any of W.M. Mendis and Co. products.

The company said that even though many complaints had been made to the Excise Department regarding the wrongful conduct of DCSL, no action had been taken.

The company said that DCSL had succeeded in acquiring over 86% of the local retail market through such unfair trade practices and was using its dominant position to wrongfully eliminate all effective competitors thereby further increasing its market share.

The company is claiming rupees one billion as damages. Attorney M.A. Sumanthiram with Suren de Silva instructed by Ms. D.L. and F. de Saram appeared for W.M. Mendis and Co.

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