National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) on Friday dismissed the appeal filed by Cyrus Mistry, the ousted chairman of Tata Sons, to defer the extraordinary general meeting (EGM) called by the company seeking his removal from the board.
Mistry family-owned Cyrus Investment Pvt. Ltd and Sterling Investment Corp Ltd had filed a contempt of court plea with NCLAT, seeking a stay on the EGM that is scheduled for Monday.
Mistry can still approach the Supreme Court on Monday seeking an injunction, in which case things will go down to the wire.
An email query to Tata Sons Ltd as well as Cyrus Mistry did not elicit any immediate response.
Earlier, on January 31, NCLAT had denied any relief to the Mistry-owned investment companies, wherein they wanted the tribunal to intervene and restrain Tata Sons Ltd from holding the EGM. When the case came up for hearing, senior counsel C Aryama Sundaram, who is representing the ousted chairman’s investment firms, argued that they first wanted to stop the EGM and, only later, can they argue the main petition where the Mistrys are claiming oppression of rights as minority shareholders.
On Thursday, the Mistrys had moved NCLAT for an injunction against the proposed EGM.
This is the second major blow to the Mistrys. On January 18, the Mumbai bench of NCLAT had dismissed their contempt petition alleging that even after agreeing to maintain the status quo, Tata Sons went ahead and called for an EGM to remove Cyrus Mistry from the board of Tata Sons Ltd.
The investment firms had approached NCLAT in December last year, alleging Tata Sons abused the articles of association and the governance framework to enable Ratan Tata to gain control of the company. That petition also named several directors on the board of Tata Sons and its majority shareholder Tata Trusts.
In its response, Tata Sons said that Mistry failed to put into effect his strategy for managing a large and complex group. Tata Sons had sacked Mistry in October.
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