The Company Law Board (CLB) on Friday stayed the auction of Uninor started by the telecom firm’s majority owner, Telenor of Norway, saying that the process being followed was “very clever”.
Hearing an application filed by Unitech, which holds a minority 32.75% stake in Uninor, CLB chairman Justice DR Deshmukh stayed the August 1 auction notice issued by Uninor and said that the Board would hear both the parties in length.The CLB observed that the manner in which the auction process was being carried out was "very clever", before directing Uninor and other respondents to file their reply by Monday.
It listed the matter for next hearing on August 8.
In a statement, Uninor termed the stay as “unfortunate” and said “it will pursue every legal measure available to it in the Indian courts to secure the interest of the company's creditors, customers and employees.”
In the August 1 notice, Uninor set a minimum bid price of R4,000 crore and sought bids by August 6. In case no bidder turns up, Telenor would pay R4,190 crore for the company, the notice said.
The CLB said the terms and conditions set out in the auction notice appeared to be “tough”.
Telenor holds 67.25% stake in Unitech Wireless, which operates under the Uninor brand.
Telenor wants to scrap the joint venture with Unitech and migrate its business to a new company to seek fresh operating licences after the joint venture’s 22 telecom licences were among the 122 quashed by the Supreme Court in February.
(With HT bureau inputs)