The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) has set aside an order of the Mumbai Bench of National Company Law Tribunal approving the resolution plan submitted for Ricoh India by a consortium of Kalpraj Dharamshi and Rekha Jhunjhunwala.
In its judgment, a three-member Bench led by acting chairperson Justice Bansi Lal Bhat held that the resolution professional’s (RP’s) decision to accept resolution plan submitted by Dharamshi and Jhunjhunwala was “blatant misuse of the authority invested” in the RP. “The act of the resolution professional to accept the resolution plan after opening the other bids, which were all submitted within the deadline for submission of resolution plan cannot be justified by any means and is a blatant misuse of the authority invested in the resolution professional to conduct corporate insolvency resolution process,” the bench said.
The NCLAT judgment came on a plea moved by Kotak Investment Advisors Ltd, which alleged the RP accepted the resolution plan filed by Dharamshi and Jhunjhunwala after the due date, which was then accepted by the NCLT in violation of principles of natural justice.
The appellate tribunal has in its judgment said the NCLT should now consider the resolution plans that were submitted before the due date, and take a decision on the same within 10 days or pass liquidation orders against the firm.
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