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Payment of $717 mn to three Chinese banks Anil Ambani has time till July 20 to reveal assets

July 02, 2020 07:34 AM


Payment of $717 mn to three Chinese banks
Anil Ambani has time till July 20 to reveal assets
London court tells him he could be jailed if he ‘disobeys’ order
| Danish Khan@timesgroup.com


Industrialist Anil Ambani has been ordered by the high court in London to disclose by July 20 details of all his assets, liabilities, income and expenditure. Failure to meet the deadline could result in imprisonment and seizure of his assets.

Ambani has to provide an affidavit “setting out all his assets worldwide exceeding USD 100,000”. These assets could be solely or jointly owned and ones in which he has a beneficial interest.

The order was issued by Master Davison of the commercial court on June 29 after Ambani failed to pay $717 million to three Chinese banks as per the May 2020 judgment by Justice Nigel Teare.

The case is related to the enforcement of a personal guarantee that Ambani allegedly gave while procuring a loan of $900 million for Reliance Communications (RCom) from Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd, China Development Bank and Export-Import Bank of China in 2012. He has claimed that he never gave any personal guarantee and that the lending was not related to personal borrowings.

Ambani’s case highlights one of the most spectacular reversals of fortune in corporate history—from being the sixth richest man in 2008 to claiming in February this year that his net worth was “zero”. RCom filed for bankruptcy last year and has been locked in cases filed by banks in India and the Chinese banks in London.

As per the June 29 order, Ambani has to also produce a list of 12 documents, which includes the last 24 months’ bank and credit card statements, evidence of tenancy rights to two floors in Seawind—an 18-storey building in Cuffe Parade—details of proceeds from the sale of a helicopter in 2019, and electricity, gas, water and municipal tax bills.

The order clearly stated that were Ambani to “disobey” the ruling, he might be held in contempt of court and imprisoned, fined or have his assets seized.

The UK court’s ruling came as the National Company Law Tribunal in Mumbai reserved its order on the SBI’s application seeking to recover Rs 1,200 crore from Ambani.

Mirror reached out to Mishcon de Reya, the legal firm which represented Ambani in the London court, but it did not respond.

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