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Tata-Mistry Case: Supreme Court to Hear Review Petition Today

Supreme Court of India

Supreme Court of India

A bench of Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, Justice AS Bopanna and Justice V Ramasubramaniam will consider the dispute case in chamber today

The Supreme Court today will be considering an appeal for review of the court’s last year’s decision backing the Tatas over the removal of the former chairman and division of shares. The decision came in response to a petition by Cyrus Investments Group, which sought reconsideration of the order in April last year.

Cyrus Mistry had approached the apex court in April 2021, seeking a review of its March 26 judgment endorsing the Tata Son’s decision to remove him as the chairperson.

A bench of Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, Justice AS Bopanna and Justice V Ramasubramaniam will consider the dispute case in chamber today.

In a judgment last year, the SC had backed Mistry’s removal, setting aside the December 2019 ruling of the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) that had directed the reinstatement of Cyrus Mistry as Tata Sons chairperson.

Dismissing pleas of Cyrus Investments and Sterling Investments — two companies backed by the Mistry family — that Mistry’s removal was an instance of oppression on minorities, the court said all questions of law were in favour of the Tatas.

“That failed business decisions and the removal of a person from Directorship can never be projected as acts oppressive or prejudicial to the interests of the minorities, is too well-settled,” the judges had said. The court had also said both parties can take the legal route regarding the dispute of shares.

Cyrus Mistry was removed as Tata Sons chairman in October 2016 after differences with the group’s former chairman Ratan Tata.

In December, Cyrus Investments Pvt Ltd and Sterling Investments Corporation Pvt Ltd had moved the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal, alleging oppression of minority shareholders and mismanagement by Tata Sons. They also challenged Mistry’s removal.

In its 2017 judgment, the NCLT upheld Mistry’s removal from as Executive Chairman and Director and had observed that just because the board of Tata Sons had held a board meeting at short notice or included the item agenda (that removed Mistry from his post at the top) at the last minute, it could not be termed as a fraud.

In December 2019, the NCLAT had reinstated Cyrus Pallonji Mistry to the position of Executive Chairman of Tata Sons and Director of the Tata Group of companies for the remainder of his tenure.

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first published:February 15, 2022, 08:38 IST