Tata Sons vs Cyrus Mistry: Former chief wants case moved out of Mumbai

By: |
New Delhi | Published: October 4, 2017 6:09:11 AM

Given that the Mumbai bench of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) had already found their petition against “oppression and mismanagement” by Tata Sons lacked merit, family firms of ousted Tata Sons chairman Cyrus Mistry on Tuesday sought the transfer of the case to the tribunal’s principal bench here or any other appropriate bench.

cyrus mistry, cyrus mistry new statement, cyrus mistry new demand, cyrus mistry tata sons caseOusted Tata Sons chairman Cyrus Mistry. (AP)

Given that the Mumbai bench of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) had already found their petition against “oppression and mismanagement” by Tata Sons lacked merit, family firms of ousted Tata Sons chairman Cyrus Mistry on Tuesday sought the transfer of the case to the tribunal’s principal bench here or any other appropriate bench.

The principal bench headed by justice MM Kumar posted the matter for hearing on October 5.

The petitioners — Cyrus Investments and Sterling Investment Corporation — said that since the NCLT Mumbai bench has already decided the case on merits, the same bench cannot be expected to deliver “the judgment on merits uninfluenced by its own earlier firm and conclusive assessment of merits”.

Even while the petition was not being heard on merit but on waiver (from the minimum shareholding requirement to raise the issue), the Mumbai bench comprising judicial member BSV Prakash Kumar and technical member V Nallasenapathy had given “findings on the merits of each allegation and categorically ruled that there was no cause of action at all and that the petition was without merit”, the firms pointed out.

The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) on September 21 had granted the firms a waiver from the minimum shareholding requirement of 10% for filing a case against Tata Sons for alleged mismanagement and oppression of minority shareholders. Setting aside the NCLT’s April 17 order that had rejected the waiver plea of Mistry’s firms, the appellate tribunal had directed the Mumbai bench of the NCLT to allow the Mistry family firms to present their case and decide on it on merits within three months.

The NCLAT ruling had comes as a big reprieve for Mistry, son of Shapoorji Pallonji Mistry whose firms own 18.4% in Tata Sons, the holding company for the Tata Group.

Mistry’s family firms had moved NCLAT when in March-April the Mumbai bench of the NCLT had dismissed two of their petitions — one alleging mismanagement and oppression of minority shareholders’ at Tata Sons and the other which sought a waiver from the minimum shareholding clause to present their case.

On March 6, NCLT-Mumbai had dismissed the petition of Cyrus Investments and Sterling Investment Corporation saying it was not maintainable. It noted that since the combined shareholding did not add up to the required minimum of 10% of the issued share capital of Tata Sons, they did not fulfil the eligibility criteria for approaching the tribunals.

The legal battle between Mistry and the Tatas is a fallout of the ouster of the former by the Tata Sons board on October 24, 2016. Subsequently, Mistry was removed as director/chairman of all the group firms leaving him with no option but to take the legal route.

Get live Stock Prices from BSE and NSE and latest NAV, portfolio of Mutual Funds, calculate your tax by Income Tax Calculator, know market’s Top Gainers, Top Losers & Best Equity Funds. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Next Stories
1No impact of Aircel merger cancellation on Reliance Communications’ rating, says Moody’s
2Amazon to charge Rs 999 for ‘Prime’ subscription soon
3High debt to limit Reliance Communications ability to renew spectrum: CLSA