The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT), on Friday, rejected IDBI Bank’s insolvency plea against Zee Entertainment. The bank had applied for insolvency to recover dues of ₹149.60 crore.
IDBI Bank appealed to the NCLT in December last year, claiming ₹149.60 crore. The amount was under dispute between Zee Entertainment and IDBI Bank.
Counsels representing Zee argued before the NCLT that since the default happened on a date during the suspension period, the insolvency petition can’t be admitted under Section 10A of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code, 2016.
Reports earlier in the year had suggested that Zee had offered to pay back the loan to IDBI.
While the Competition Commission of India has approved the Zee-Sony merger in 2022, after Zee fought a long-drawn legal battle with one of its larger shareholders, Alabama-based Invesco, Zee continues to fight cases of insolvency pushed by its creditors.
The most recent hurdle against the Zee-Sony merger at the NCLT is the petition filed by SEBI against one of the Essel Group companies.
Zee founders are also in talks with Axis Bank Ltd. and JC Flowers & Co.’s asset reconstruction unit to settle dues of ₹400 million each made to entities controlled by them.
ZEEL needs to repay outstanding debts to continue the merger process with Sony, which would lead to the creation of India’s biggest media firm in terms of viewership.