DoD Mulls IPO For Sponge Iron

Hyderabad, September 23: | Updated: Sep 24 2003, 05:30am hrs
Caught in a legal tangle over the tribal land issue coupled with the recent Supreme Court strictures on oil majors divestment process, the Department of Disinvestment (DoD) is mulling alternate proposals, including an initial public offer (IPO) in the case of public sector Sponge Iron India Ltd (SIIL).

It is believed that the steel ministry has initiated a draft proposal suggesting an IPO and the issue is likely to be discussed at the meeting of Cabinet Committee on Disinvestment scheduled on October 3, 2003, the sources close to the development told FE here on Tuesday.

Though the SIILs disinvestment offer in June received an overwhelming response from the private parties across the country, the apex courts strictures, political compulsions and the case filed by an NGO called Samata against the sale of SIIL are forcing the steel ministry to look out for alternate arrangements, they added.

The sources further disclosed that at a recent performance review meeting of the company held in Delhi recently, both the ministry and company officials have discussed an IPO option in case the CCD decides to put a break on divestment process of all the PSUs, including the current process of SIIL, due to the recent Supreme Courts orders on oil majors divestment process. Meanwhile, the division bench of the AP High Court could not take up the case filed by Samata against the sale of SIIL on monday as the case was listed at the fag end of the day.