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Pay back Rs 500 cr, Jet tells Sahara

india Updated: Jun 29, 2006 19:47 IST

Jet Airways, which is caught in a legal battle with Air Sahara over the collapsed Rs 2,300 crore takeover deal, has claimed that its rival was bound to return Rs 500 crore paid as advance within a week of termination of the pact.

In its application filed before the Supreme Court on Wednesday, Jet argued that as per the Share Purchase Agreement, Sahara India had "undertaken, absolutely and unconditionally" to repay the advance amount of Rs 500 crore if the deal failed.

"This repayment in terms of the undertaking is to be made within seven days from the date of termination or expiry of the SPA without any dispute, demur or delay," Jet said.

Besides seeking transfer of the cases initiated by Air Sahara in a Lucknow district court to the Bombay High Court, Jet had prayed for a stay on the interim orders of the Lucknow court, which put a freeze on the escrow account opened by Jet Airways, besides preventing sale of Sahara's shares pledged for Rs 500 crore.

Jet said that in terms of Clause 18.5.1 of the SPA, the two sides had agreed to intimate the Escrow Agent (ICICI Bank) about termination of the deal.

Further, as per the clause, the bank was bound to refund the amount to Jet within one working day, the company said.

India's largest private airline also argued that clause 18.1 of SPA clearly mentioned that the agreement can be terminated automatically without the mandatory requirement of the notice from any party, if the deal was not completed within 65 days.

"Consequently, in terms of the express and specific provision contained in the SPA (in clause 18.1), it stood terminated at the midnight of June 21, 2006," Jet contended.

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