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A big challenge for Sahara's legal eagles

By BS Bureau
November 22, 2013 13:49 IST
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Sahara has always managed to get the best of the legal fraternity to fight by its side. The impressive list of lawyers lined up by the group brought to the table immense knowledge and decades of experience.

They also tried their best. But for once, their combined magic did not work as they came against an inspired man from Chennai.

Arvind Datar, a company law expert, took up the case more out of a passion to prevent a wrong precedent being set.

Unfazed by the battery of legal luminaries that Sahara lined up, Datar stuck to his guns and came out victorious.

Dushyant Dave 
 
The Delhi-based lawyer led Sahara’s legal proceedings when it was fighting Jet Airways (India) Ltd over the deal to sell Air Sahara, which went on for a few years.

He was also associated with the group’s legal tussle with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) in the initial stages and appeared at the Lucknow hearing

A M Singhvi 

Singhvi, who had fought for Jet against Dave in the case against Sahara, later argued for Sahara during the proceedings before the Lucknow bench of

the Allahabad High Court, where Sahara had contested an interim order passed by Sebi asking it to wind up the debenture schemes. He did not participate when the case moved to SC

Fali S Nariman 

The octogenerian lawyer held the fort for over a month each — first at the Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) in Mumbai and later at the Supreme Court in New Delhi — emphatically putting  forth several arguments stating that OFCDs were not securities and that the process was not a public issue after the final order by Sebi

Gopal Subramaniam

The former solicitor general represented one of the two Sahara group companies and argued that the private placement route was a common money-raising mode for small and medium companies and a ruling against them would hamper the economy. He also appeared before SAT when Sebi did not accept a deposit of Rs 5,120 crore

Ram Jethmalani 

The former law minister and noted criminal lawyer whipped up fury as he moved a parallel application to the Chief Justice’s court after the matter was decided by another bench. Though he won some relief, following criticism from the bar association the case returned to the original bench, which criticised the tactics of the group.

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