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Investors rap RCom bid to use I-T refunds to settle Ericsson dues

Investors rap RCom bid to use I-T refunds to settle Ericsson dues

New Delhi: Financial creditors of the debt ridden Reliance Communications Wednesday opposed its plea to release the Income tax refunds to clear dues of Ericsson before the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT).

The NCLAT was hearing RCom's plea, which has approached the appellate tribunal seeking waiver over the moratorium placed by it on February 4.

A two-member bench of the NCLAT headed by Justice S J Mukhopadhaya has directed the financial creditors of the company, including the State Bank of India, to file their reply on the issue by March 8.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibbal, appearing for RCom, requested the appellate tribunal to allow the release of money directly into the account of Ericsson, to which the ADAG group firm has to pay Rs 550 crore.

However, this was opposed by senior advocate Krishnan Venugopal and others who were representing the financial organisations.

"This tribunal is not the appropriate forum to decide the issue. The Supreme Court has already considered the issue. The sum has to come independently," said Venugopal, who was appearing for the SBI. The appellate tribunal has directed to list the matter on March 11 for next hearing.

On February 20, the Supreme Court held Reliance Communications chairman Anil Ambani guilty along with two others of contempt of court for wilfully violating its order by not paying Rs 550-crore dues to telecom equipment maker Ericsson.

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