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Essar welcomes Supreme Court verdict on 2G court summons

IANS  |  New Delhi 

The Essar group Friday welcomed the Supreme Court judgment quashing the order by the 2G special court summoning its vice chairman Ravi Ruia to appear before it to face trial in an alleged conspiracy in the allocation of excess spectrum in 2002.

"The verdict of the honourable Supreme Court setting aside the summoning order against vice chairman Ravi Ruia is a vindication of our position that we have not violated any law," the statement said.

The judgment re-establishes that the directors and the shareholders cannot be made vicariously liable in criminal matters.

"We welcome the judgement. The judgement will assuage concerns among corporate leaders regarding misuse of judicial process. It will help re-instill confidence among investors and corporates, especially at a time when India is looking to attract fresh investments and increase growth."

The apex court bench quashed the trial court order staying "the legal principle has been wrongly applied" by the special court. During the proceedings, counsel for the CBI had conceded that there was no evidence or material on record against Ravi Ruia, the statement said.

"Essar is a responsible corporate citizen and has always acted within the ambit of law and followed all regulations. We have made investments in the core sectors of the economy in excess of Rs.1 lakh crore in India and provided employment directly and indirectly to over 1 lakh people," the statement said.

In the still ongoing case relating to issue of telecom licenses to Khaitan Group-owned Loop Telecom, the key question relates to interpretation of license conditions, it said.

"It is at best a commercial issue which has been wrongly converted to a criminal case by misuse of the judicial process. There is no charge regarding corruption or misconduct of public officials against either Essar or Khaitan group. We are confident that our stand in that case will also be eventually upheld and as such this matter should not have been part of 2G which relates only to corruption," it added.

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First Published: Fri, January 09 2015. 20:42 IST