NCLT gives extension to Adhunik companies

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KOLKATA: The Kolkata chapter of India’s dedicated bankruptcy courts has given a 90-day extension to three companies of the Adhunik Group after the clock ran out for the natural-resources conglomerate to reach a resolution on Rs 5,000 crore of outstanding debt.

Adhunik Metaliks, Zion Steel, and Orissa Manganese and Minerals had failed to hammer out a debt resolution plan within the initial deadline of 180 days. The extension comes at a time when the group companies have collectively received about 20 expressions of interest. However, the companies are yet to receive any binding bids, which are expected by mid-January.

Apart from the three group companies, Adhunik Alloys and Power too is likely to get a three-month extension for its resolution process. Incidentally, Adhunik Alloys appears to have received the highest number of EoIs, with as many as nine entities formally expressing interest.

The next hearing for the three companies at NCLT Kolkata bench is scheduled January 18, while that of Adhunik Alloys and Power is slated for January 30.

“The court seems to have recognised efforts being made toward a resolution plan, with several entities expressing interest to own the debt-laden companies,” said an executive present in the court Thursday.

The Adhunik group is engaged in the production of alloy and carbon-steel products for auto, power and engineering sectors and is also into mining of manganese ore. According to the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) a stipulated period of 270 days is allowed collectively to hammer out a resolution plan.

A consortium of 18 lenders, led by State Bank of India (SBI), has claimed about Rs 5,000 crore in unpaid dues from the group companies. Other lenders include Allahabad Bank, Bank of Baroda, Bank of Maharashtra, Corporation Bank, HDFC Bank, ICICI Bank, Indian Overseas Bank, and Punjab National Bank.

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