Bhushan Power Insolvency - NCLAT Wonders How P&H HC Passed Directions; Asks NCLT To Follow Orders Of Only SC & NCLAT
The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal has expressed surprise at the intervention made by the Punjab and Haryana High Court in the corporate insolvency resolution process of Bhushan Power and Steel, which is going on in National Company Law Tribunal, New Delhi bench.
The NCLAT has directed the NCLT to consider the matter "uninfluenced by any order except the decision of this Appellate Tribunal and the Hon'ble Supreme Court".
The Committee of Creditors of the company had approached the NCLAT complaining of the delay in finalizing the resolution process.
On February 4, the NCLAT had directed the NCLT to decide on the approval of the resolution plan submitted by JSW steel. After that, the matter was heard and orders were reserved by the NCLT.
Meanwhile, one of the former directors of Bhushan steel approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court complaining that the copy of the resolution plans were not supplied to the ex-directors. On April 18, the High Court remanded the matter back to the Tribunal directing it to take a fresh decision on the matter after deciding the issue of non-supply of copies to ex-directors.
In this backdrop, the CoC approached the NCLAT for early disposal of the matter by contending that High Court has no jurisdiction to pass any order, when the matter is pending and cannot order to remit the matter for fresh decision as more than 270 days have been passed.
Though the NCLAT observed that appeal under Section 61 of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code was not maintainable as orders were yet to be passed by the NCLT, it observed that the High Court could not have intervened in the matter.
"it is not clear as to how the Hon'ble Punjab & Haryana High Court, that too the vacation Bench had passed an order as noticed above. The record shows that the said writ petition was heard ex-parte and disposed of without notice to the Respondent-Punjab National Bank and others", observed the NCLAT bench headed by former SC judge Justice S J Mukhopadhyaya.
Though the High Court may have jurisdiction over tribunals under Articles 226 and 227 of the Constitution of India, it is not clear as to how the Punjab and Haryana High Court can pass an order, which has no territorial jurisdiction over Delhi, the NCLAT said.
"We do not want to express any opinion with regard to the order of the Hon'ble High Court of Punjab and Haryana dated 18 th April, 2019 passed in CWP No.10325 of 2019. The Adjudicating Authority is supposed to decide the case on merit in accordance with law uninfluenced by any order except the decision of this Appellate Tribunal and the Hon'ble Supreme Court", ordered the NCLAT while disposing of the matter.