McDonald's case: Vikram Bakshi owes us Rs 75 crore, says Hudco CMD

Written by Press Trust of India | Mumbai | Updated: Sep 17 2013, 04:48am hrs
Housing and Development Corporation Ltd (Hudco) has filed a criminal case under Negotiable Instruments Act against McDonald's estranged Indian partner, Vikram Bakshi in a 2012 cheque bounce case, a top official of the state-run lender said today.

The case pertains to a Rs 60 crore loan which Bakshi had taken from Hudco for his hospitality company Ascot Hotels Pvt Ltd.

"We have filed a criminal case against Vikram Bakshi for bouncing of cheques. He has taken a loan of Rs 60 crore for his Ascot Hotels and he is our defaulter," Hudco Chairman and Managing Director V P Baligar told reporters here today.

The default amount has now touched to Rs 75 crore with penal interest, he said.

Responding to queries, Sanjeev Gulati, CFO, Ascot Hotels & Resorts Pvt Ltd told PTI: "The timing of the statement of the CMD, HUDCO singling out our company is rather strange, specially when HUDCO itself has recently gone to the Debt Recovery Tribunal. This act is against the ethics of lender & customer relationship.

"Infact, HUDCO has been demanding repayment of principal even before the project has become operational. We have already paid above Rs 40 crore as interest and principal without the project being operational," he added.

"HUDCO is the main lender who for their own reasons did not release the entire sanction loan amount thereby causing the hospitality (project) to come to a standstill...As the matter is sub-judice, we do not want to comment beyond this," Gulati said.

Hudco's Baligar said the cheque bounce case happened in 2012 and Hudco had already filed cases against Bakshi under Securitisation and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest (SARFAESI) Act.

"A notice under SARFAESI Act has been issued for attachment of Bakshi's properties and he has requested some time. If he doesn't pay, we will auction his properties," Baligar said.

Last month, Bakshi was ousted by McDonald's from the post of managing director of their equal joint venture company, Connaught Plaza Restaurants (CPRL).

Bakshi, the Indian partner of McDonald's north and east operations in the country, has already approached the Company Law Board (CLB) against his removal as the MD of CPRL.

In a public notice on August 30, McDonald's India said: "Vikram Bakshi has ceased to be the Managing Director of Connaught Plaza Restaurants pursuant to expiration of Bakshi's term on July 17."