The Ministry of Telecommunications opposes the NCLAT to the resolution of the videoconference; claims Rs 881.92 crore due

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The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) moved the NCLAT Insolvency Appeal Tribunal against the NCLT Order approving the Consolidated Resolution Plan for 13 companies in the Videocon group, including Videocon Telecommunications.

The DoT, in its motion, asked the appeals tribunal to set aside the order issued by the Mumbai court of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) on June 8, 2021 authorizing the takeover bid of 2,962 crore in rupees by Twin Star Technologies of Anil Agarwal. .

The DoT argued before NCLAT that failing telecommunications companies cannot be allowed to evade liability by triggering the corporate insolvency resolution process.

A three-member NCLAT bench said the appeals tribunal had already stayed the NCLT order on July 19, 2021 granting a “status quo ante” to be maintained and that Resolution Professional would continue to handle the business. of Videocon Industries in accordance with the provisions of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code.

“In view of the arguments presented by the appellant / applicant (DoT) and the residence order challenged on almost similar grounds, there is no need to go into more detail,” NCLAT said.

NCLAT requested to register the DoT’s appeal for hearing on January 11, 2022.

“Respondents are encouraged to file a ‘reply affidavit’ within the next two weeks and a reply, if any, may be filed within a week,” said the NCLAT order issued on December 8, 2021.

The respondents in this case include Videocon Industries and Videocon Telecommunications.

Videocon Telecommunications, in order to continue its activities and in accordance with the license agreement for a unified license (access services), had obtained up to 131 bank guarantees from SBI in favor of DoT up to Rs 881.92 crore.

However, said bank guarantees were not “unlawfully” allowed to be invoked due to pending proceedings before the NCLT, DoT submitted to the National Company Law Appeals Tribunal (NCLAT) through his lawyer.

The IBC cannot be invoked for resolving “the fraudulent and malicious intent” to withhold huge arrears owed to the government and others, said the DoT’s submission, recorded in the NCLAT order.

In addition, as part of the approved resolution plan, operational creditors were asked to withdraw all of their overdue money under the guise of the Corporate Insolvency Resolution Process (CIRP), he alleged.

The DoT will hardly get a paltry 0.12% of its total claim, he added.

“The Code has been invoked for the resolution of companies under stress and where management has no ulterior motive to shirk their responsibilities,” said the DoT.

Earlier, in rendering a 47-page judgment on June 8, the NCLT observed that the creditors of debt-ridden Videocon Industries Ltd would suffer a nearly 96% haircut on their loans and the bidder “pays next to nothing “.

The NCLT had observed that the resolution plan granted 99.28% to operational creditors, which it sarcastically implied as a “haircut or a tonsure, a total shave.”

Disgruntled financial creditors – Bank of Maharashtra and IFCI Ltd – and the former chairman and CEO of the Videocon Venugopal group have already challenged the NCLT order.

In September, SBI, the main lender of Videocon Industries, approached NCLAT to request a new offer from the 13 companies in the debt-ridden group, amid strong comments against the takeover bid of Rs 2,962 crore per Twin Star Technologies by Anil Agarwal.


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