With the first day of hearing in the appeal against the NCLT Bombay order, the Shapoorji Pallonji group addressed before the NCLAT that its right as a minority shareholder under Sections 241-242 of the new Companies Act 2013 was not protected by the NCLT Bombay.
Addressing the bench headed by Chairperson Justice SJ Mukhopadhyaya, Senior Advocate CA Sundaram for the Appellant argued that the scope and ambit of the rights of minority shareholders under Section 241-241 of the new 2013 Act are for more wider than that under Section 397-398 of the old 1956 Act. in its arguments,Mr. Sundaram stated that the new 2013 Act provided for an additional ground of prejudice to a minority shareholder in order to take recourse to the provisions relating to oppression and mismanagement by the Company. He explained,
“Today even if you do not make a case of oppression, you can still make out a case of prejudice…It’s like two concentric circles, overlapping each other..”
Thus Mr Sundaram submitted that the word ‘prejudice’ under Section 241 of the new 2013 Act was not qualified by the phrase ‘unfair’ as stated in the English Law, therefore giving a much wider scope for protection to a minority shareholder. Furthermore, the phrase “affairs of the companies” should not merely be restricted to that of Tata Sons but also to the Tata Group Companies as well.
The next date is kept for further arguments on 12th December 2018.
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