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Supreme Court clears government’s 7-member board to take over Unitech

Former IAS officer Yudhvir Singh Malik will chair the board, which will craft a scheme in two months to accelerate Unitech’s pending projects. (HT)Premium
Former IAS officer Yudhvir Singh Malik will chair the board, which will craft a scheme in two months to accelerate Unitech’s pending projects. (HT)

  • The court also granted a two-month moratorium from any legal proceedings against the new management.
  • The bench clarified that no existing projects shall be stalled by the appointment of the new board.

A seven-member independent board appointed by the central government is set to take charge of embattled builder Unitech Ltd, with the Supreme Court on Monday approving a government proposal to this effect.

Former Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer Yudhvir Singh Malik will chair the board, which will craft a scheme in two months to accelerate the pending projects and address concerns of 12,000 Unitech customers waiting for their homes.

Approving the proposal submitted on Saturday, an apex court bench presided by Justice D.Y. Chandrachud and including Justice M.R. Shah sought a report on the resolution plan, which will include the way forward on stalled projects.

The court also granted a two-month moratorium from any legal proceedings against the new management. A retired Supreme Court judge will be appointed to monitor the board on the resolution framework.

Rejecting Unitech’s plea to appoint a member from the old board, the bench said it would not be appropriate at this stage to allow any member from the erstwhile board to assist the new board. The bench clarified that no existing projects shall be stalled by the appointment of the new board.

The central government had submitted a six-page report on Saturday, proposing a seven-member board to take charge of Unitech. The Centre also agreed to revisit its 2017 proposal to take control of Unitech and complete the stalled projects. The government said it was not willing to infuse any funds of its own to complete pending projects, and in fact sought a moratorium for 12 months.

The apex court had previously appointed forensic auditor Grant Thornton to investigate Unitech’s books over buyers’ complaints that they were not given flats despite the company taking advances from them. When the report pointed to an alleged diversion of funds, the Supreme Court in December asked the government whether there was any possibility that it could take control of Unitech.

*PTI contributed to this story.

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