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Shivinder-Malvinder spat: NCLT orders status quo on RHC Holdings management

Shivinder's counsel asks court to disallow any sale of shares in RHC Holdings by elder brother Malvinder

Veena Mani & Sohini Das  |  New Delhi 

Shivinder Singh, Malvinder Singh
The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), hearing the plea of Shivinder Mohan Singh against his elder sibling Malvinder, on Thursday said status quo should be maintained on the shareholding and board of RHC Holding. The younger sibling had approached the NCLT on Wednesday, seeking removal of Malvinder from the board of the company that is jointly owned by the brothers.  

The NCLT gave permission to Shivinder for accessing and inspecting records of RHC, saying: “They can take photocopies in accordance with the Companies Act.” The tribunal directed Malvinder and other respondents to file their replies within 10 days and sought a rejoinder from Shivinder in two weeks. 

The matter will next be heard on October 9. 

In his petition, Shivinder had sought that his wealth (which he claimed got eroded due to unlawful actions of Malvinder and former Religare chief Sunil Godhwani) be restituted and restored. Malvinder was absent in court on Thursday where Shivinder's counsel asked the court to restrict any sale of shares in RHC Holding by his brother. 

Shivinder’s counsel argued the debt-equity ratio had not been maintained in RHC because of which “meaningful progress” with the investors for sale of stake of RHC in Fortis or Religare Enterprises could not be achieved by the end of 2017. 

Shivinder had mentioned in his petition that owing to the actions of Malvinder and delays to strategic transactions by him (Malvinder), the secured lenders of RHC lost patience and sold or dumped the pledged Religare shares of RHC. 

Ranjana Roy Gawai, managing partner of law firm RRG & Associates that filed the petition on behalf of Shivinder, refused to comment as the matter was subjudice. 

A source close to Shivinder said "Fortis got sold out because the acts of mismanagement by Malvinder and Godhwani had put RHC and its subsidiaries in an unsustainable debt trap”. 

Shivinder alleged that his wife’s (Aditi’s) signatures were forged by Malvinder in RHC documents. They have also claimed that Godhwani, who was a close family friend and advisor, was involved in issuing mandatory instructions to the employees of RHC and was managing the day-to-day affairs of RHC Holding in “connivance” with Malvinder. 

Sources close to Malvinder, however, claimed that while law would take its own course, Shivinder's claims that he was unaware of the running of the company were not true. Legal experts also feel that by taking Malvinder to the NCLT, Shivinder is unlikely to get relief in the ongoing cases. Shivinder said in his petition that he was overseeing the operations of the hospital business and had entrusted and reposed faith on Malvinder, who was at the helm of affairs in RHC, for all financial, executive, banking and accounting matters.

RHC Holding was incorporated on April 19, 2007, as Solaris Finance under the Companies Act. Its was subsequently renamed on November 7, 2008. 

The Delhi High Court had pulled up Malvinder on Wednesday for selling his shares in Religare Healthcare for Singapore $3.5 million (approximately $2.47 million) instead of paying up Daiichi Sankyo. Malvinder has been asked to deposit the money in Daiichi’s account.

First Published: Thu, September 06 2018. 13:27 IST