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NCLT allows YES Bank time to file a reply in Dish TV matter, adjourns the case for December 22

The Mumbai bench of the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) on Tuesday allowed two weeks’ time to file its reply in its case against India and adjourned it till December 22.

YES Bank, the largest shareholder in the direct-to-home (DTH) company, had approached the NCLT seeking a direction to the Dish TV board to call for an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) of the shareholders for the removal of managing director and chief executive Jawahar Goel and four other directors.

The division bench of members Suchitra Kanuparthi and Anuradha Bhatia allowed JP Sen, senior advocate appearing for the YES Bank, two weeks’ time to file a reply to the response of Dish TV, and adjourned the matter to December 22.

However, Navroz Seervai, senior advocate appearing for Dish TV, argued that the lender’s demand was invalid.

He referred to the Bombay High Court’s recent order in the similar case, where the court had granted an injunction in favour of Zee Entertainment Enterprises (ZEE) against Invesco.

As the largest shareholder of ZEE, Invesco had sent a requisition notice for board reconstitution of the company and had approached the NCLT.

The Bombay high court’s order has been challenged by the offshore investor before a division bench, and the matter is currently pending.

In May last year, Yes Bank invoked promoters’ pledged shares in Dish TV, taking control of a 24.19% stake.

Incidentally, investigating a complaint filed by Subhash Chandra, founder and chairman of the Essel Group and brother of Goel, the Gautam Buddh Nagar police station in Uttar Pradesh has issued notices and taken custody of 44.5 crore shares of Dish TV, currently owned by YES Bank.

The police have also restrained the company and the lender from dealing in or exercising any rights over these shares until further orders or until the investigation is complete.

ET on September 24 reported that the dispute between Goel and YES Bank over corporate governance and fundraising plans was escalating and was reaching the courts.

The bank wants to dissolve the entire board and remove the promoter family, as it believes the board is functioning in cahoots with the minority shareholders (the promoters), who should not have representation on the board.

Dish TV, which has been trying to raise funds for some time, had decided to go ahead with Rs 1,000 crore rights issue to be able to invest for acquiring new customers and on marketing and promotions.

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