Valli Arunachalam hopes her case against Murugappa group would be heard on merit at NCLT

She said that she has complete faith in the justice system and it would not be only for her family she is fighting the battle, it would benefit all the women across the country.

Arunachalam had in earlier hearings told the tribunal that applications filed against her suit on behalf of the group family members citing technical errors were delaying tactics to keep her out.
Arunachalam had in earlier hearings told the tribunal that applications filed against her suit on behalf of the group family members citing technical errors were delaying tactics to keep her out.

Valli Arunachalam, ‘karta’ of MV Murugappan Hindu Undivided Family, who has dragged the Murugappa group family members to NCLT for denial of representation in the Murugappa group holding company Ambadi Investments (AIL), has said with the tribunal accepting her fresh waiver application for maintaining an alleged oppression and mismanagement case against AIL, she is hopeful that the matter would be discussed on the merits. The case is coming up for hearing on December 8.

Speaking to FE exclusively on Monday, Arunachalam, the eldest daughter of MV Murugappan, former executive chairman of Murugappa group, said the original waiver application was filed in February this year and there has been lot of delays on account of respondents raising technicalities, that forced her to file a fresh application. “We had a lot delays, things have changed now and I do believe the justice will be finally served,” she said.

Stressing that her fight has been to get equality for daughters on a par with sons in the family businesses, Arunachalam said the NCLT application against AIL pertains to oppression and mismanagement in the holding company. “We have to just wait for the matter to be discussed at the NCLT, to understand the merits of the matter and that is something I can not pre-empt it now,” she said, when asked about the objective of the NCLT case against the AIL and other Murugappa family members.

She said that she has complete faith in the justice system and it would not be only for her family she is fighting the battle, it would benefit all the women across the country.

When asked about when does she see her ultimate goal of either a board representation or her and families stake being bought out by AIL happening, Arunachalam said;” I think it is a process, we have to take one step at a time and see where it goes. We are going to give our best shot at NCLT,” she said, adding, “the first step is to win the waiver plea.”

Terming her fight as David versus Goliath, Arunachalam said she knows that there would be lot of challenges, and she is determined to fight it till its logical conclusion. “I am not afraid of challenges, when I commit something, I commit it cent per cent, I don’t do things half-heartedly,” she said.

Arunachalam said the decision to move NCLT was not taken in a haste. “ We have waited for three years asking them to settle the issue amicably and honour the wish of my father, who was head of the Murugappa group for twenty years. There was no other way, but to move ahead with the legal recourse, when there was no response,” she said.

The Chennai bench of NCLT on October 13 had issued notices to AIL and other members of the Murugappa group, admitting the fresh waiver petition, moved after rectifying errors in the original plea, filed by Valli Arunachalam and her family. AIL and Murugappa group members had opposed both the original and fresh waiver applications on technical errors, and even, raising objections regarding maintainability of such pleas.

Arunachalam had in earlier hearings told the tribunal that applications filed against her suit on behalf of the group family members citing technical errors were delaying tactics to keep her out.

The MVM family — comprising Valli, her sister and their mother — moved the NCLT seeking waiver of the minimum 10% shareholding required to ensure the alleged oppression and mismanagement case against AIL is maintainable. It also sought board representation or alternately that its 8.21% stake in AIL be bought out.

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