The SC has also ruled out liquidation of the company since that would harm the interest of the homebuyers
The Supreme Court today threw a spanner in the attempt of Jaiprakash Associates and its promoters to retain control of its subsidiary Jaypee Infratech. It did two things in that direction.
First, the apex court asked the group to deposit Rs 1,250 crore more by June 15 to ensure a sufficient cash pool for homebuyers seeking refund. It then also gave more time to seek fresh bids for the company that saw three bidders in race to buy it with no eventual winner.
The 270-day deadline to find a solution to the company’s debt problems lapsed on May 12. As per the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, a company has to be sent for liquidation if no solution is found within that time but not so in this case. The SC has also ruled out liquidation of the company since that would harm the interest of the homebuyers.
The group has so far deposited Rs 750 crore and with a Rs 10,000-crore offer to its lenders last week, it had hoped to keep the company under its fold. That possibility dimmed a little today.
The apex court said the interest of homebuyers will be fully protected even if that meant overriding the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code which keeps the interest of secured lenders above all. Homebuyers, being unsecured creditors, are therefore left exposed as secured creditors have the first right to the assets of the company. There are some 18,000-19,000 homebuyers awaiting the delivery of their flats for seven-to-eight years.
There were three bidders in race to buy Jaypee Infratech — Lakshadweep, the Adani group and Kotak Realty Fund-Cube Highways.
In the end, only Lakshadweep, a joint venture of Sudhir Valia-led Suraksha Asset Reconstruction Company and Mumbai-based Dosti Realty, was left in the fray but its Rs 7,000-crore offer was rejected by a committee of creditors – over a dozen lenders of Jaypee — as being too low.
Jaypee Infratech owes Rs 9,094.31 crore to a consortium of over a dozen banks led by IDBI Bank. The state-owned lender alone has a 44.3 percent share in Jaypee’s total debt.
According to a note prepared by IDBI Bank, the value of just the immovable assets mortgaged to the IDBI consortium is Rs 17,116 crore while their distress value is pegged at Rs 14,548 crore. Lakshadweep’s Rs 7,000 crore bid pegged Jaypee’s value at less than half of IDBI’s distress scenario number.The Allahabad bench of the National Company Law Tribunal will hear the insolvency matter on May 22 while SC will hear the plea of the homebuyers on July 4.