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Strict to join competitor company after resignation

Querist : Anonymous (Querist) 16 May 2024 This query is : Resolved 
I am on my notice period .
I have put resignation on 2nd may 2024 wherein mentioned my last working day will be on 31st May 2024.
After 10days , HR reply back by saying that they have rejected the resignation. Also they had hold my April month salary .
Saying that I must give them in writting that I won't join any competitor company in next six months .

Also this clause is mentioned in my appointment too.

My new company is the competitor company .

I need to know is the clause of not joing the competitor company is legal . Is there is any action employer can get on employee.
What needs to be my further step ?
Querist : Anonymous (Querist) 16 May 2024
Please guide me soon
kavksatyanarayana (Expert) 16 May 2024
As per your appointment letter, the condition is there and you agreed with it and joined the company. So it is not possible to take legal action against your company.
T. Kalaiselvan, Advocate (Expert) 16 May 2024
The employment offer letter terms and conditions are binding to some extent, however restricting you from joining the competitor company after leaving the parent company by resignation cannot be said to be an illegal act because the non-compete obligations are valid only during employment and cannot hinder an employee from joining a competitor post-employment.
You are legally free to join any company as per your wish. Section 27 of the Indian Contract Act-1872 provides that ”Every agreement by which anyone is restrained from exercising a lawful profession or trade or business of any kind, is to that extent void”.
Querist : Anonymous (Querist) 17 May 2024
Thanks for the reply .can I join competitor company as a consultant , so my ex company won't take any legal action for joining competitor company for next 6 months .
Querist : Anonymous (Querist) 17 May 2024
Can I join As a consultant or freelancer to avoid any legal issue due to the clause mentioned by current company
T. Kalaiselvan, Advocate (Expert) 17 May 2024
It is up to you whether to join as a consultant or an employee.
You can decide about it, we cannot suggest, we can only render legal opinion that the employer cannot take any legal action against you for this after you ceased to be his employee in this regard.
Querist : Anonymous (Querist) 17 May 2024
The wording mentioned in My appointment is :
That on cessation of your employment with us , you will be under obligation not to join the competitor company for next six months unless permitted expressly by the company.

So to avoid any legal action later, I am joining the competitor company as consultant
Querist : Anonymous (Querist) 17 May 2024
Is it ok ? As per the word , I won't get any legal action from my resigned company
T. Kalaiselvan, Advocate (Expert) 17 May 2024
Any legal action taken by your previous company for joining the competitor company post resignation is not maintainable as per provisions of section 27 of Indian contract act
We cannot say that they will not take any action, they will first issue a legal notice to which you can issue a reply notice denying their allegations and then challenge their case if filed as per law.
Now it is up to you to decide further course of action because you are not trying to understand the opinions given by various experts of this forum but insist on the same question in differnt form.

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