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News Snippets

  • Reports say that BJP candidate from Begusarai, Giriraj Singh, has refused to contest. Senior leaders are trying to convince him
  • Goyal's departure from Jet raises the possibility of the airlines' revival with banks now expected to release funds for the cash-strapped entity
  • Time to pass on the baton, says Naresh Goyal as he quits Jet Airways
  • Naresh Goyal and his wife Anita quit Jet Airways board
  • Amit Shah to contest from Gandhinagar, the seat held by veteran L K Advani whose name does not figure in first list
  • PM Modi to contest from Varanasi again
  • BJP comes out with its first list of 184 candidates across 20 states
  • Nirav Modi termed as "flight risk',denied bail by UK court
  • Aseemanand and three others acquitted in Samjhauta Express blast case
  • BJP wins floor test in Goa. 20 MLAs vote for the Pramod Sawant government while 15 vote against it
  • Mukesh and Nita Ambani help Anil to clear Ericsson dues. Anil thanks them publicly.
  • Anil Ambani escapes jail by clearing his dues to Ericsson within the time set by the Supreme Court
  • BJP's Pramod Sawant to be next chief minister of Goa. The party brings allies MGP and GFP in line by offering them posts of deputies to the CM
  • Despite overnight meeting, BJP yet to come up with a replacement for the departed Manohar Parrikar as Goa CM
  • Mid-air collision of two international flights luckily averted over Mumbai skies
anil ambani
Anil Ambani: Trouble Comes In Threes

By Ashwini Agarwal

The Supreme Court has rightly wielded the stick against Anil Ambani, directing the beleaguered tycoon to pay Rs 453cr to Ericsson within 4 weeks or spend 3 months in jail for contempt of court. Three corporate entities belonging to the Reliance-Anil Ambani group were found guilty of contempt for not having complied with earlier orders of the apex court. Although it is a fact that each corporate entity is a separate person in the eyes of law and in normal case Ericsson would not have had a remedy if the companies that were to pay it went under. But the catch is that Anil Ambani has personally stood as a guarantor for the payments.

Ericsson was quick to latch on to this fact when his companies and he failed to make the payments last September and December as per the court directive. It submitted in court that although the companies might be bankrupt, the guarantor was investing in other projects like Rafale and that meant that he had the money. It pleaded with the court to take cognizance of the contempt committed and direct Ambani to pay up, which the court has now done. This leaves no option with Ambani – he has to either pay the amount in four weeks or serve the punishment and pay at a later date.

When Mukesh Ambani’s Jio had agreed to take certain assets of Anil Ambani group companies at a good price, there were hopes that Anil might get a new lease of life by paying off his debtors. But, as the younger Ambani informed the Supreme Court, that deal fell through and now he has no option but to file for bankruptcy. Despite that, since he is a guarantor, he has to pay Ericsson even if his companies cannot. Ambani must be realizing the import of the saying that trouble always come in threes. Whatever the situation, Ambani cannot escape from his legal responsibilities and the Supreme Court has told him so in no uncertain terms. There are reports that he will tide over the current problem as his companies have received sufficient funds through income tax refunds.

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