Moneycontrol
Last Updated : Sep 06, 2018 07:56 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Fortis saga: NCLT admits Shivinder's petition alleging financial misconduct, forgery against Malvinder

In the 43-page petition, Shivinder alleged his brother Malvinder and Godhwani for perpetrating “oppression and mismanagement” and sought removal of Malvinder from the board of RHC and restitution of funds diverted by the duo.

Viswanath Pilla @viswanath_pilla
 
 
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The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) on September 6 directed Malvinder Singh, and Sunil Godhwani, the former Chairman and Managing Director of Religare among others, to maintain status quo over the shareholdings and composition of the RHC Holdings board in a petition filed by Shivinder Singh.

The tribunal which has heard the petition filed by Shivinder alleging oppression and mismanagement of RHC, Religare and Fortis, allowed both parties, Shivinder and his wife Aditi Singh and Malvinder, to inspect the books of RHC.

NCLT has posted the matter on October 9 for next hearing.

In the 43-page petition, Shivinder alleged his brother Malvinder and Godhwani for perpetrating “oppression and mismanagement” and sought removal of Malvinder from the board of RHC and restitution of funds diverted by the duo.

He also demanded Malvinder and Godhwani to restore the wealth of RHC Holding which got eroded due to their alleged unlawful actions; and sought Malvinder to return the funds that were unlawfully taken from Fortis and Religare.

Shivinder in the petition distanced himself from his brother and Godhwani.

He says he just oversaw the operations of healthcare business but was never in the control of company’s finances and claims he is unaware of most financial transactions.

He says he took hiatus towards that end of 2015 only for a spiritual purpose only to return later to salvage the group.

Moneycontrol saw a copy of the petition filed by Shivinder. Some of the allegations he made include:

Debt trap

Shivinder alleges Malvinder and Godhwani who were in control of the affairs at RHC Holding, Fortis and Religare from the end of 2008 onward conducted the affairs of these companies in a prejudicial and oppressive manner.

He charges the duo for pushing the RHC Holding into an "unsustainable debt trap through various acts of mismanagement." RHC is the holding company of Fortis and Religare.

“The Petitioners have suffered serious impairment in their respective net-worth and unwarranted loss of reputation and credibility,” he alleges.

Misappropriation of funds

Shivinder alleges that Malvinder abused his position as executive chairman at Fortis Healthcare and Religare Enterprises by extending loans to related party companies.

He mentions a specific case of taking out of Rs 473 crore from Fortis Healthcare, to preferentially pay creditors of RHC.

He alleges that the payment had actually not helped RHC in any meaningful way and in fact, has “resulted in value loss to RHC far in excess of the amount of the outstanding ICDs as it leads to erosion of RHC Holding”. Shivinder claims he wasn’t involved in the conception or execution of such ICDs.

He further states that ICDs became a major stumbling block in concluding the sale of Fortis Healthcare in 2017.

“These resources were taken from Fortis Healthcare despite Malvinder being fully aware of the precarious financial position of the healthcare provider. This resulted in Fortis, a listed company, entering into a debt trap prejudicing the interest of its shareholders at large,” Shivinder said.

The other specific case he points out is about taking out Rs 750 crore as loan issued by Religare Finvest, an NBFC subsidiary of Religare Enterprises, to RHC Holding and its subsidiary Ramchem. Shivinder says this eroded Religare Finvest capital base and the loans availed by RHC remain outstanding till date.

Forgery

Shivinder Singh also alleges Malvinder of forging signatures of his wife in the documents of the RHC.

“These papers purported to and granted wide-ranging authority to officers and third parties to do various acts, including to incur large expenses and make large investments, on behalf of the Company. Petitioner No. 3 (Aditi Singh wife Shivinder) and other directors, were shown as discussing and approving the bulk of these proposals when in fact, the requisite meetings did not take place,” he alleges.

“In fact, Petitioner No. 3 (Aditi Singh) was usually sent a thick stack of minutes and papers to sign at her residence, with short notice along with a note to sign and return immediately with no further explanation,” he laments.
First Published on Sep 6, 2018 07:56 pm
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