Millennium Post

Supreme Court lets DLF deposit rest Rs 480-crore fine in tranches

Real estate major DLF on Friday got a breather from the Supreme Court which allowed it to deposit in monthly instalments the remaining Rs 480 crore of the Rs 630 crore fine slapped on it by Competition Commission of India (CCI) for allegedly resorting to unfair business practices. A Bench headed by Chief Justice H L Dattu ordered that the real estate firm will commence the payment of instalments of Rs 75 crore from January 15 next year.

The DLF had till Thursday deposited Rs 150 crore with the apex court registry. The court in its August 27 order had said the Registry will be at liberty to invest it in any of the nationalised banks.

DLF had moved the apex court last week expressing difficulty in meeting the November 26 deadline to deposit the entire Rs 630 crore as a pre-condition to entertain its appeal. It had sought six months' time to comply with the direction. But the bench had asked it to deposit Rs 50 crore within three weeks and the rest Rs 580 crore in the next three months, that is before November 27.

The real estate company has sought more time for depositing rest of the amount claiming that it was in serious financial difficulty, which was aggravated by Sebi's decision to ban the company and six of its senior officials from accessing the capital markets for three years for an alleged non-disclosure in the 2007 IPO filing. DLF has offered to pledge land in lieu of the outstanding amount and said its land would remain pledged till it deposited the money in the apex court's registry. The apex court on August 27 had said the total amount should be deposited within three months with its Registry pending the outcome of the appeal filed by DLF against May 19 order of Competition Appellate Tribunal upholding the penalty of Rs 630 crore imposed by the CCI.

 The bench had said so far as the interest on the amount was concerned it has to be determined as per the November 9, 2011 order of the CCI that was fixed at 9 per cent.
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