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CLB returns petitions of Telenor, Unitech

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The (CLB) today returned cross-petitions filed by Norway's telecom giant and its Indian partner on technical grounds.

Before returning the petitions over certain deficiencies in filing, CLB Chairman Justice B R Deshmukh asked the warring partners to mediate to resolve their differences.

Telenor, which approached CLB to prevent any "wrongful obstruction" of its effort to secure its Indian investments, did not agree to the mediation.

Justice Deshmukh asked both the parties to mention their cross-petitions after rectifying the errors on March 13.

"Parties should sit together and work out on settlement by way of compensation," he said observing that present hostility between Telenor and Unitech is to extent that both want to push other out from their JV firm Uninor.

CLB asked the parties to mention their petition after curing the defect.

During the proceedings, battery of counsel appearing for Telenor informed the CLB that the matter needed to be urgently heard as there was no fund to run from March.

They further stressed that the assets of the company would have to be sold out at fair value, which was refuted by Unitech's counsel.

Telenor and Unitech had on February 24 filed fresh petitions before the CLB to remove or restrain each other's representatives from their JV, Uninor.

The Norwegian firm wants to dump its partner, Unitech after the Supreme Court on February 2 revoked 22 mobile licences held by their joint venture.

While Telenor had requested for the "exclusion" and "removal" of Unitech MD and his two other nominees from the "management and administrative affairs of Uninor", Unitech had asked for maintaining the status quo of Uninor, and not allowing transfer of its assets to any other company without its consent.

Telenor holds over 67% stake in the JV, while the rest is with Unitech.

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