Consider a given interest in Kalanithi Maran, tells SC SpiceJet


The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked the low-cost airline SpiceJet to consider “giving some interest” to media baron Kalanithi Maran and his Kal Airways for settling the dispute over a share transfer issue.

A bank consisting of Chief Justice NV Ramana and Justices Krishna Murari and Hima Kohli have now closed the case for further hearing on April 18 after senior lawyer Mukul Rohatgi appeared before the Spicejet, seeking some time to settle the dispute or fight the case. .



“They have to pay some interest. Ask them to give some interest,” the bank said.

At first, a lawyer for Maran and others said that the cheap airline wanted to pay “no interest”.

“We will have it on Monday,” the bank said when Rohatgi said he would try the settlement again, otherwise it would argue on the next date of hearing.

Earlier, the bank had set the case for hearing on April 12 and said it would have to try to resolve the dispute.

Before that, the apex court was told on February 14 by Kal Airways and Maran that they did not agree with two proposals to settle their dispute with SpiceJet over payment of interest in connection with the issue of share transfer as the low cost airline owed them about 920 crore Rs following an arbitral award.

SpiceJet, in its first offer, had suggested that it would pay Rs 300 crore for a complete and definitive settlement of the dispute as second, out of the bank guarantee of Rs 270 crore deposited with the Delhi High Court, it would give Rs 100 crore for now and an order will be passed by the Supreme Court encouraging the High Court to decide the case in connection with the arbitral award quickly. “They (Kal Airways and Maran) have considered the offer made by my friend (senior lawyer Mukul Rohatgi, appearing in the case on behalf of SpiceJet). But they have not found them acceptable,” said senior lawyer Maninder Singh, who was assisted by Karanjawala and Company, had told the Supreme Court on 14 February.

The bank heard SpiceJet’s appeal against the Supreme Court’s order of November 2, 2020, and asked the airline to deposit approximately Rs 243 crore as interest in connection with the dispute over transfer of shares with its former promoter, Maran, and Kal Airways.

On November 7, 2020, the Supreme Court upheld the order of the Supreme Court of Delhi requesting SpiceJet to deposit approximately Rs 243 crore as interest in connection with the dispute over transfer of shares.

SpiceJet and its promoter Ajay Singh were asked to deposit Rs 243 crore or pay interest on Rs 579 crore, which the high court had asked the airline in 2017 to deposit below the 2018 arbitration price in the dispute over share transfer.

The Supreme Court had granted SpiceJet six weeks to make the payment and the deadline for that, according to an order of September 2, expired on October 14, 2020.

Following this, Maran and his company moved the High Court to confirm Singh’s entire shareholding in Spicejet and take over the non-payment management of Rs 243 crore.

The Supreme Court had taken note of Spicejet’s appeal and upheld the interim order, remaining the order of the High Court.

Maran and Kal Airways had moved the high court over the dispute over share transfer with SpiceJet, demanding that 18 crore warrants redeemable as share shares be transferred to them.

On July 29, 2016, the Supreme Court asked both parties to settle the dispute under arbitration.

It had ordered SpiceJet and Singh to deposit Rs 579 crore in the high court register.

SpiceJet was allowed to provide a bank guarantee for Rs 329 crore and to make a cash deposit of the remaining sum of Rs 250 crore by the high court. The Supreme Court, in July 2017, rejected SpiceJet’s appeal against the Supreme Court’s order.

On July 20, 2018, the arbitral tribunal denied Maran’s claim for damages of Rs 1,323 crore for not issuing the warrants to him and Kal Airways, but had granted him a refund of Rs 579 crore plus interest. Maran, the owner of Sun TV Network, then moved to the high court against the arbitration award.

The case had to do with a dispute arising from the non-issuance of warrants in Maran’s favor following the transfer of ownership to Singh, the controlling shareholder of SpiceJet.

The dispute began after Singh regained control of SpiceJet in February 2015 amid the airline facing a financial crisis.

Maran and Kal Airways had transferred their entire 35.04 crore shares in SpiceJet, a 58.46 per cent stake in the airline, to their co-founder Singh in February 2015 for only Rs 2.

The bank heard SpiceJet’s appeal against the Supreme Court’s order of November 2, 2020, and asked the airline to deposit approximately Rs 243 crore as interest in connection with the dispute over share transfer.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard employees and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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