Batelco Group (Ticker: BATELCO ), the international Telecommunications Group with operations across 14 countries, has successfully obtained Indian freezing orders from the Madras High Court against certain Indian assets of Chinnakannan Sivasankaran (Mr Siva) and his related parties namely: his ex-wife Mrs Jayalakshmi Sivasankaran, his father R.C.K. Vallal, his mother Chinnakannan Chandrammal, his long-term associates Baskaran, Nithyavathi Venkatesan and his related company, Siva Limited. The value of the assets frozen by such orders is estimated to be approximately 500 Crore (US$ 74 million).
The orders that have been made by the Madras High Court are intended to pay down a substantial UK judgment that was awarded to BMIC Limited (a fully owned subsidiary of Batelco) by the English High Court of Justice totaling US$ 212 million in June 2014 (the UK Judgement). The UK Judgement was awarded against Mr Siva and Siva Limited, following BMIC’s successful litigation against them (the defendants). The UK Judgment found that the defendants failed to honour a Settlement Agreement signed with BMIC in November 2011, relating to a commercial venture into which such parties had entered in 2009. According to the UK Judgment, full payment should have been made to BMIC by the defendants by 26 June 2014. To date the defendants have failed to pay such sum to BMIC.
Ihab Hannawi, Group CEO of Batelco said:
“We fully expect all of the respondents to honour the Indian Court Orders and pay to BMIC the monies owing to it under the UK judgement. We will pursue all legal avenues available to us against such parties to secure this outstanding payment.”
[BMIC acquired a 42.7% stake of Indian registered S Tel in 2009. S Tel had been awarded a 2G Licence in 2008. Following the cancelation of 2G licences by India’s Supreme Court in February 2012, BMIC sought to implement an agreed put option which under certain circumstances, such as the cancelation of its 2G licence, or in the event of a failure of Siva to secure financing, would ensure Siva bought back the shares acquired by BMIC at the price paid originally. BMIC and the defendants entered into the binding Settlement Agreement to give effect to this commitment which contained a promise by Mr Sivasankaran and Siva Limited to make payment to BMIC in agreed circumstances.]