Home / Companies / News /  Tata Sons-Cyrus Mistry fight before NCLT, NCLAT: A chronology of events

In a big blow to the Tata Sons Ltd the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) on Wednesday held that appointment of N. Chandrasekaran as executive Chairman of Tata Sons as illegal. It also restored Cyrus Mistry as the Chairman.

The two-judge panel of NCLAT said Ratan Tata’s actions against Mistry were oppressive and the appointment of a new chairman was illegal. The court also said Tata Sons’ move to turn private from a public company was unlawful and ordered a reversal.

The order will take effect after four weeks and Tata has the option to challenge the ruling in the Supreme Court.

The following is the chronology of the developments that took place in the Tata-Mistry case before the NCLAT and Mumbai-bench of NCLT

October 24, 2016: Cyrus Mistry ousted as Tata Sons chairman, Ratan Tata named as an interim Chairman of the group.

December 20, 2016 : Two Mistry family backed investment firms, Cyrus Investments Pvt Ltd and Sterling Investments Corporation Pvt Ltd, move the NCLT Mumbai, alleging oppression of minority shareholders and mismanagement by Tata Sons. They also challenged Mistry's removal.

January 12, 2017: Tata Sons names N. Chandrashekaran as Chairman, the then TCS Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director.

February 6, 2017: Mistry removed as a director on the board of Tata Sons, holding company of Tata group firms.

March 6, 2017: NCLT Mumbai sets aside plea of the two investment firms of Mistry family over maintainability issue, citing they didn't meet the criteria 10% ownership in a company for the filing of a case of alleged oppression of minority shareholders under the Companies Act.

The Mistry family owns 18.4% stake in the closely-held Tata Sons but the holding is less than 3% if preferential shares are excluded.

April 17, 2017: NCLT Mumbai also rejects plea by the two investment firm's plea seeking waiver in the criteria of having at least 10 per cent ownership in a company for filing case of alleged oppression of minority shareholders.

April 27, 2017: The investment firms move the NCLAT, challenging NCLT order which rejected their petitions over maintainability. They also challenged rejection of their waiver plea.

September 21, 2017: NCLAT allows pleas by the two investment firms seeking waiver in filing case of oppression and mismanagement against Tata Sons. It, however, dismissed Mistry's other petition on maintainability saying the firms do not have more than 10 per cent in Tata Sons.

The appellate tribunal directs the Mumbai-bench of the NCLT to issue notice and proceed in the matter.

October 5, 2017: Two investment firms approach the principal bench of NCLT at Delhi, seeking transfer of the matter from Mumbai to Delhi citing likelihood of bias. The principal bench reserves order on the plea of the two investment firms.

October 6, 2017: The Principal bench of NCLT dismisses the pleas and imposed a cost of 10 lakh on the two investment firms, which was to be shared by both.

July 9, 2018: NCLT Mumbai dismisses pleas of Mistry challenging his removal as Tata Sons chairman as also the allegations of rampant misconduct on part of Ratan Tata and the company's Board. NCLT said it found no merit in his allegations of mismanagement in Tata group firms.

August 3, 2018: The two investment firms approach the NCLAT against the order of the NCLT dismissing his plea challenging his removal as chairman of the company.

August 29, 2019: The NCLAT admits petition filed by Cyrus Mistry in his personal capacity and decided to hear along with the main petitions filed by the two investment firms.

May 23, 2019: The NCLAT reserves its order after completing the hearing in the matter.

December 18, 2019: The NCLAT restores Mistry as executive chairman of Tata Sons, but suspended its implementation for four weeks in order to provide time for Tatas to appeal.

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