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Singh brothers out of options to avoid Daiichi award as SC junks appeal

RHC Holding, Singh brothers' main holding company, said it was evaluating options to challenge award in Singapore courts

Agencies  |  New Delhi 

Singh brothers
The Singh brothers

Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh have run out of legal options in India to avoid paying a Rs 35 billion ($546 million) award to Daiichi Sankyo after the Supreme Court dismissed their appeal against a lower court verdict.

“Heard the counsels for the petitioners and perused the relevant material. We are not inclined to interfere. Special Leave Petitions are accordingly dismissed. Consequently, all applications are also disposed of,” the apex court bench said.

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The top court’s decision on Friday means the only way left for the brothers to escape the liability is to pursue their challenge to the original ruling in Singapore. The Delhi High Court had said last month that the Singapore tribunal’s award was enforceable in India. “We can only say: wish you all the best for Singapore,” Justice Ranjan Gogoi said when delivering the two-judge panel’s verdict.

The top court’s decision sets up the endgame in a legal saga that started in 2012 when Daiichi initiated the Singapore proceedings with allegations the brothers concealed key information in the 2008 sale of their generic drug company.

RHC Holding Pvt, the brothers’ main holding company, said it’s disappointed by the verdict. Reacting to the verdict, the spokesperson of RHC Holding said it was evaluating options to challenge the majority Arbitration Award in Singapore Courts.

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“We maintain that there was no misrepresentation or concealment in the Ranbaxy deal to Daiichi Sankyo and these are false accusations made against the Respondents four years after Daiichi Sankyo bought Ranbaxy. The products made by Ranbaxy had always been of good quality which even the US FDA maintained in their statements and hence continued to be sold in the US,” the spokesperson said in a release.

The ruling “clears the way” for the award to be executed and for Daiichi to recover the money, Amit Misra of P&A Law Office, which represents the Japanese company in the case, said in a statement.

In 2008, the Singhs agreed to sell their family firm Ranbaxy Laboratories to Daiichi for $4.6 billion. That same year the US Department of Justice started a probe, eventually resulting in a guilty plea by Ranbaxy and a fine for selling adulterated drugs. In 2016 the Singapore tribunal ruled the brothers had concealed and misrepresented critical information about the probe.

First Published: Sat, February 17 2018. 00:39 IST