In a new turn of events, Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) has opted out of bidding for the West Bengal government’s stake in Haldia Petrochemicals Ltd.
State-owned GAIL India also did not submit bids, leaving Indian Oil Corp (IOC) as the sole bidder. Sources said the IOC bid could be to the tune of Rs. 2,500 crore.
Sources at RIL told HT that the company had not put in a bid.
BC Tripathi, CMD of GAIL, said the company opted out due to legal complexities. “We did the due diligence after which we found a lot of complexities in the company and decided to opt out of the process,” Tripathi told HT.
Sources in the know said RIL was not in favour of the state government’s decision to receive bids in sealed envelopes, rather than holding an open auction.
Vedanta Resources, through its subsidiary Cairn India, and Jindal Steel and Power Ltd had also expressed interest in HPL, but decided not to bid.
Purnendu Chatterjee-led The Chatterjee Group (TCG), a joint promoter of HPL, has the right of first refusal to the government’s 31% stake on offer. TCG will have 30 days to match the highest bid and another month for payment.