Reliance Communication (RCom), owned by Anil Ambani, on Monday revealed that the required payment of Rs 550 crore and interest thereon to Ericsson has been completed. The statement confirmed the due has been paid in compliance with the judgment of the Supreme Court.
Anil thanked his elder brother, Mukesh, and Nita Ambani, for the support and praised the importance of family values.
The Supreme Court on February 20 had held RCom chairman and two directors guilty of contempt of court. The apex court was hearing a contempt plea filed by Ericsson India against Anil over not clearing dues of Rs 550 crore.
A bench comprising Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman and Justice Vineet Sharan had ordered Ambani, Seth, and Virani to pay Rs 453 crore to Ericsson. The payment was expected to be completed in a span of four weeks, failing which they would face a three-month jail term. The judicature also imposed a fine of Rs 1 crore each on three.
It directed that Rs 118 crore already deposited by Reliance Group in the apex court’s registry be disbursed to Ericsson.
The bench held that the undertaking given by them was false to the knowledge of the court and it affected the administration of justice.
Anil Ambani was present in the court when the bench pronounced the order. Earlier, the top court had asked Ambani to be present before it during the hearing in connection with the contempt case.
Ericsson had contended that RCom is minting huge profits and is wrongfully claiming that it has no money to pay Rs 550 crore to the telecom equipment maker.
Anil Ambani-led RCom had earlier agreed to deposit Rs 118 crore but Ericsson refused to accept. Following which, the top court had asked the RCom chief to deposit the amount in its registry.
On October 23 last year, the top court had asked RCom to clear the dues by December 15, 2018, saying delayed payment would attract the interest of 12 per cent per annum.
In 2014, Ericsson India had signed a seven-year deal to operate and manage RCom’s nationwide telecom network. It had alleged that RCom didn’t pay dues of over 1,500 crores. It challenged the debt-ridden firm before the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT).
Ericsson later agreed to settle its debt of over Rs 1,500 crore for a sum of Rs 550 crore. Following, the NCLAT order the apex court previously had noted that RCom within 120 days will have to settle its dues of Rs 550 crore.