Richa Mishra

New Delhi, Jan. 15

THE Ministry of Company Affairs (MCA) is understood to have sought information from its western region office on various Reliance Group companies.

The Ministry's move has come in the wake of recent media reports pertaining to the bitter battle between the two siblings of India's largest business family over the ownership issue of the company.

When asked about the nature of information that the Ministry is seeking, sources told Business Line, "These are general information on the various group companies." With the Reliance drama taking new twists and turns each day, officials remained `non-committal' on whether the Ministry proposed to initiate any action under Section 209A of the Companies Act.

Section 209A of the Companies Act deals with the inspection of books of accounts and other books and papers of each company by the registrar or by such officer of the Government as may be authorised by the Central Government in this behalf. Further, it also provides that such inspection may be made without giving any previous notice to the company or any officer. The Ministry had earlier, based on separate complaints filed by Mr Rashid Alvi and Mr Subramaniam Swamy against the Group, inspected the books of accounts of some of the Group companies.

Recently, the younger of the two brothers, Mr Anil Ambani, had met Mr Prem Chand Gupta, Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Company Affairs, and the Secretary, Company Affairs, Ms Komal Anand.

Mr Anil Ambani is understood to have discussed various ongoing issues regarding differences between the two brothers, including questions of ownership of the various Reliance companies. However, the Ministry has remained non-committal on the issues discussed.

The Ministry has been maintaining that it has received no complaint from any stakeholders of the company on any controversial issues.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated January 16, 2005)
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