The Calcutta High Court has ordered status quo on the “sale of shares” of Haldia Petrochemicals Ltd (HPL) till December 16 or further orders, a move that will hit the West Bengal Government’s plan to divest its stake in the ailing petrochemical company. The State Government has a near 40% stake (675 million shares) in HPL. Of the total holding, around 9% (155 million) is disputed, as The Chatterjee Group (TCG), another promoter of HPL with a 41% stake, has claimed ownership over the same. The Court has not clarified whether “status quo” is to be maintained for the disputed shares or the entire 40% stake put on the block.
Justice Mukherji observed that a pending appeal by TCG before the Supreme Court to move to the Arbitration Cell of International Chamber of Commerce at Paris would become infructuous if share transfer is allowed.