The Chennai branch of the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) on Monday dismissed appeals filed by Ambadi Investments (appellant) — the holding company of the ₹38,000-crore Murugappa group — challenging an order of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) allowing the application filed by either get a seat on the board of the holding company or get the family to buy back the 8.23 per cent stake and her family to withdraw an “earlier” waiver petition.
The “withdrawal” application was to rectify the errors in the first application, which had sought a waiver of the minimum shareholding requirement of 10 per cent for maintaining the alleged oppression and mismanagement case against Ambadi Investments.
Valli Arunachalam, the eldest daughter of former Murugappa Group executive chairman MV Murugappan, is fighting a legal battle on the issue against Ambadi Investments Ltd (AIL), the flagship company of the Murugappa Group and family members. The fight is to either get a seat on the board of the holding company or get the family to buy back the 8.23 per cent stake.
Valli Arunachalam, Vellachi Murugappan and their mother, MV Valli Murugappan (MVM family) filed a petition before the NCLT, Chennai, asking that they be treated on par with other shareholders who were members of the family. A fresh waiver petition containing certain new facts was filed.
The NCLT allowed the withdrawal of the old waiver application filed by Valli Arunachalam and directed the fresh waiver application to be taken on board. The Murugappa family filed an appeal, challenging the order before the NCLAT, Chennai.
The NCLAT Bench comprising Justice M Venugopal (Member-Judicial) and Kanthi Narahari (Member-Technical) in its order on Monday said in the light of the foregoing detailed deliberations, this Tribunal concludes that the views arrived at by the NCLT, Division Bench-I, Chennai, in permitting the withdrawal of the first waiver application, dismissing the same as “withdrawn” and taking the second waiver application to take up the objections, if any, in relation to the second waiver application at an `appropriate stage’, are free from any legal flaws. Resultantly, the appeals fail.
September 19, 2022