Shakti Nath vs Alpha Tiger Cyprus Investment No. … on 23 June, 2020


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Supreme Court of India

Shakti Nath vs Alpha Tiger Cyprus Investment No. … on 23 June, 2020

Author: Hon’Ble Ms. Malhotra

Bench: Hon’Ble Ms. Malhotra

                                                                    NON­REPORTABLE
                                 IN THE SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
                                  CIVIL APPELLATE JURISDICTION
                               MISC. APPLICATION NO. 929 OF 2020
                                                    IN
                                  CIVIL APPEAL NO. 1674 OF 2020


          Shakti Nath & Ors.                                … Appellant/Applicant
                                                    Vs.
          Alpha Tiger Cyprus Investment
          No.3 Ltd. & Ors.                                  … Respondents

                                               ORDER

1. The present Misc. Application No. 929 of 2020 was earlier

listed before this Court on 19.05.2020, when the Appellants

were permitted to deposit Rs. 26,00,00,000/­ (Rupees Twenty­

Six Crores only) with the Registry of this Court by 21.05.2020.

With respect to the balance payment of Rs.

3,17,20,477/­ (Rupees Three Crores Seventeen Lacs Twenty

Thousand Four Hundred and Seventy­Seven only), an

extension of two months’ was granted to deposit the said

Signature Not Verified

Digitally signed by
amount in the Registry of this Court.

GEETA AHUJA
Date: 2020.06.23
13:59:44 IST
Reason:

1
With respect to prayer (iv) of the Application, Notice

was issued to the other parties.

2. In compliance with the Order dated 19.05.2020, the

Appellants deposited Rs. 26,00,00,000 (Rupees Twenty­Six

Crores only) on 20.05.2020 in the Registry of this Court.

3. The matter has now come up for hearing with respect to prayer

(iv) which reads as under:

“(iv) Direct the Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 to sign and execute an
appropriate share purchase agreement to effectuate the
acquisition of M/s Good Living Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. of the
shares held by the Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 in the Respondent
No. 3.”

4. Mr. Dhruv Mehta, Senior Advocate appearing for the

Appellants submitted that as per the Order dated 18.02.2020

passed by this Court, M/s. Good Living Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd.

(“GLI”) of the Bhutani Group had agreed to purchase the entire

shareholding of the Appellants and Respondent Nos. 1 and 2

in I.T. Infrastructure Park Pvt. Ltd. ­ Respondent No. 3

Company for a total sale consideration of Rs. 99,44,55,000

(Rupees Ninety­Nine Crores Forty­Four Lacs only).

The relevant extract from the said Order is set out

herein below for ready reference:

“4…

2

(iii) M/s. Good Living Infrastructure of the Bhutani Group agreed
and undertook to pay Rs.99,44,55,000/­ for the purchase of the
entire shareholding of Respondent No. 3 ­ I.T. Infrastructure
Park Pvt. Ltd. from the Appellants and Respondents No. 1 and
2.

5. GLI vide Order dated 16.12.2019 was directed to file an

Affidavit of Undertaking that it would be bound by the

commitments made before this Court. The Undertaking was

filed by GLI on 10.02.2020, the contents of which are recorded

in the Order dated 18.02.2020 as : ­

7. M/s Good Living Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. (“GLI”) has also filed an
Affidavit of Undertaking dated 10.02.2020 stating that :

“1. I am the CEO/Additional Director of M/s Good Living
Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. (“GLI”) and have been duly authorized by
GLI vide Resolution of Board of Directors dated 20.12.2019 to
give the present undertaking on its behalf.

2. That GLI undertakes to pay a sum of Rs.99,44,55,000/­
towards the purchase of entire shareholding of IT infrastructure
Park Pvt. Ltd. (Respondent No. 3) from the Petitioners and Alpha
Tiger Cyprus Investment No.2 Ltd. and Alpha Tiger Cyprus
Investment No.3 Ltd. in order to acquire the sub lease of the
property bearing Plot No. 001B situated at Sector 140A in Noida,
District Gautam Budh Nagar, Uttar Pradesh.

3. That out of total sum of Rs.99,44,55000/­. GLI undertakes to
pay the dues payable to NOIDA, amounting to
Rs.42,64,75,477/­, directly to NOIDA. In this regard, GLI seeks
liberty from this Hon’ble Court to approach NOIDA for
reschedulement of payment of the above mentioned sum. GLI
undertakes to make the appropriate representation/ application
to NOIDA for such reschedulement within one week of the
receipt of the order passed by this Hon’ble Court granting the
liberty sought herein.

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4. That GLI undertakes to deposit the balance purchase price after
deducting the NOIDA dues therefrom with the Hon’ble Court i.e.
an amount of Rs.56,79,79,523/­, in the following manner:

Rs. 10,00,00,000/­ Upfront deposit to be made with the
Court within 10 days of the signing of
the Share Purchase Agreement
between all the Parties, which shall
also be deposited in the custody of the
Hon’ble Court.

Rs. 46,79,79,523/­ To be deposited within a period of four
months with an additional grace
period of two months after the passing
of the final order by the Hon’ble Court.

5. It is prayed that the balance amount of Rs.46,79,79,523/­ be
distributed to Alpha Tiger Cyprus Investment No.2 Ltd. and
Alpha Tiger Cyprus Investment No.3 Ltd by this Hon’ble Court
after the transfer of the entire shareholding of Respondent No.3
to GLI.

6. I say that the above mentioned undertaking is voluntary and
unconditional.”

In para 9 of the Order dated 18.02.2020, it was

recorded that GLI was bound by the unconditional

Undertaking submitted on Affidavit. Para 9 of the Order

reads as under:

“9. M/s. Good Living Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. is bound by the
unconditional undertaking submitted on Affidavit before this
Court. Any default by M/s Good Living Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd.
would be treated as a breach of the undertaking submitted to
this Court”

4

6. Mr. Dhruv Mehta, Senior Advocate appearing for the

Appellants submitted that it was imperative that the Share

Purchase Agreement (“SPA”) be executed by Respondent Nos. 1

and 2, to enable GLI to raise funds for the transaction, and

comply with its obligations under the Order dated 18.02.2020.

7. It was further submitted that after the Order dated 18.02.2020

was passed, there were various emails exchanged between the

parties for the execution of the SPA. The emails have been

annexed to the present Application. The Counsel referred to an

email dated 19.02.2020 addressed by DGM, Legal of the Logix

Group to Mr. George Jacob of Alpha Real Capital, enclosing

the draft SPA for approval.

In response, Mr. George Jacob vide his email dated

20.02.2020 stated that he had forwarded the draft SPA to their

lawyers for review and comments. Mr. George Jacob requested

Appellant No. 1 to share the final draft of the SPA after further

modalities of the sale, both operational and legal were

discussed with the lawyers of GLI. Further emails were

exchanged between the parties on 27.02.2020 and 28.02.2020,

which reveal that the parties were in the process of executing

the SPA expeditiously.

5

8. The Appellants submit that two months later, Respondent Nos.

1 and 2 resiled from their commitment to execute the SPA, and

vide email dated 17.04.2020, stated that as on date, they were

holding : (a) 1,00,000 Class A Shares; (b) 10,00,000 Class C

Shares; and (c) 10,00,000 Compulsorily Convertible Preference

Shares of Respondent No. 3 Company. It was further stated

that the Original Share Certificates, Share Transfer Forms,

and Resignation of existing Directors would be handed over

after the deposit of Rs 56,79,79,623 in the Registry of this

Court.

8.1 Mr. Nakul Dewan, Senior Advocate represented GLI, and placed

reliance on the averments made in the Affidavit dated

02.06.2020. It was submitted that since GLI was investing

almost Rs. 100 crores in the transaction, they would require

legal documentation for the same. The execution of the SPA

was necessary to enable them to raise funds with a commercial

bank or NBFC. The draft of the SPA had already been

forwarded to Respondent Nos.1 and 2 in February, 2020.

GLI fairly stated in its Affidavit that it is not insisting on the

immediate transfer of shares in the Respondent No. 3

Company, but was merely requesting for the execution of the
6
SPA. The SPA is in the nature of an agreement to transfer

shares at a future date.

8.2 GLI further submitted that they were entitled to obtain certain

minimal warranties from both the Appellants and Respondent

Nos. 1 and 2, viz. (i) warranty with respect to the absolute title

of 50% shareholding in Respondent No. 3 Company of each of

the parties; (ii) warranty stipulating that there were no existing

encumbrances, or third party rights created on the said shares;

(iii) warranty with respect to the absolute authority of the

executants of the SPA (on behalf of the Appellants and

Respondent Nos. 1 and 2) by a resolution of the Board of

Directors of their respective companies.

9. Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 filed an Affidavit stating their

objections to the present Application. Mr. Sanjeev Puri, Senior

Advocate appeared on behalf of the Respondent Nos. 1 and 2,

and submitted that the prayer for executing the SPA would

amount to a modification of the terms of the Final Order dated

18.02.2020 passed by this Court. It would also be contrary to

Clause 11.23 of the ICC Arbitral Award, which had observed

that Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 return the shares held by them,

upon payment of all sums awarded. It was submitted that they

7
were willing to undertake to return the shares of Respondent

No. 3 Company to the Appellants after the entire payment was

made in terms of the Order dated 18.02.2020.

Alternatively, Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 were willing to

undertake to deposit the shares in this Court, which may be

released to the Appellants/GLI in terms of the Order dated

18.02.2020.

The Counsel for Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 expressly stated

before this Court that there is no encumbrance created by

Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 on their shareholding. With respect to

the land and Title Deeds of the property, the same were in the

possession and control of the Appellants, and his clients could

not be held liable for any act of the Appellants.

The Counsel for Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 made an oral

prayer that the amounts lying deposited in the Registry of the

Court, be released in favour of his clients.

10. Having heard the learned Counsel for the parties, we are of

the view that prayer (iv) of the present Application for execution

of the SPA is justified. We note that GLI has deposited an

8
amount of Rs. 10,00,00,000 (Rupees Ten Crores only) as down

payment, pursuant to the Order dated 18.02.2020.

This Court vide Order dated 24.04.2020 directed the

Registry to invest the amount in an interest­bearing deposit for

6 months on auto renewal basis.

11. We are of the view that the execution of the SPA would not

prejudice the rights and interest of the Respondent Nos. 1 and

2 in any manner. The emails exchanged between the parties

after the Order dated 18.2.2020, reveal that Respondent Nos. 1

and 2 were earlier agreeable to execute the SPA. However, there

was a subsequent change of mind.

GLI is entitled to the execution of the SPA, as the legal

documentation reflecting the agreement under which the

acquisition of shares would take place.

12. Accordingly, we hereby order and direct that : ­

(a) To effectuate the directions given in para 4(iii) of

the Order dated 18.02.2020, it is necessary that the

Appellants and Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 execute the SPA

with GLI within a period of 3 weeks from the date of this

Order.

9

(b) We direct the Appellants and Respondent Nos. 1

and 2 to provide the necessary warranties, including the

warranty that the parties have not created any

encumbrance or third­party rights whatsoever on the

land on which the Respondent No. 3 Company was to set

up the IT Infrastructure Park.

A warranty must also be furnished by both the

Appellants and Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 with respect

to their respective shareholdings in Respondent No. 3

Company.

(c) The Appellants and Respondent Nos. 1 and 2 are also

required to place a certified copy of the Board Resolution

of their respective Companies, stating that the authorized

signatories have been empowered to execute the SPA.

(d) We further direct that the amount of Rs. 26,00,00,000

(Rupees Twenty­Six Crores only) deposited by the

Appellants on 19.05.2020, be released to Respondent

Nos. 1 and 2 through their Power of Attorney

holders/authorized representatives.

10

(e) We further direct the Registry of this Court to Retain

the amount of Rs. 10,00,00,000 (Rupees Ten Crores only)

deposited by GLI till further orders.

The present Miscellaneous Application is accordingly

disposed of in the aforesaid terms.

..….………………………J.

(UDAY UMESH LALIT)

…..……………………….J.

(INDU MALHOTRA)
New Delhi;

June 23 , 2020.

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