RCom offers to sit with RIL, offer turned down

July 7th, 2008 - 9:48 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, July 7 (IANS) Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group (R-ADAG) Monday said it was open to meeting officials at Reliance Industries (RIL) to clarify any doubts on consolidation talks with South African telecom giant MTN. It, however, added that RIL, led by Mukesh Ambani, “spurned” the offer to meet July 14, and sent a third letter threatening legal action.

R-ADAG-promoted Reliance Communications (RCom) is engaged in a complicated share-transfer talks that will see the Indian company becoming an MTN subsidiary but will give its promoter Anil Ambani a controlling stake in the South African entity.

RIL has contested the negotiations, saying under a family pact signed between the two brothers on January 12 2006, RIL had the first right of refusal to buy controlling stake in RCom.

On its part, R-ADAG has challenged this contention, saying the 2006 pact was signed only by RIL officials, and that too, illegally.

In a statement Monday, RCom said “RIL’s mala fides stand clearly established” by refusing to meet for talks, and while it was “not interested in understanding factual position or clarifying its doubts” and that its “sole objective (was) to derail talks with MTN and frustrate a possible combination.”

It also said the proposed meeting was not part of any conciliation or dispute resolution mechanism, and that it reserved the right to take any actions as legally advised.

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