Britain’s Cairn Energy Plc has secured a French court order to seize about 20 Indian government properties in France to recover a part of USD 1.7 billion arbitration award, sources said on Thursday.
However, Ministry of Finance said that the Government of India has not received any notice, order, or communication, in this regard, from any French Court.
Government is trying to ascertain the facts, and whenever such an order is received, appropriate legal remedies will be taken, in consultation with its Counsels, to protect the interests of India, the Finance Ministry said.
The CEO and representatives of Cairns have approached Government of India for discussions to resolve the matter. Constructive discussions have been held and Government remains open for an amicable solution to the dispute within the country’s legal framework, news agency ANI quoted the Ministry of Finance.
Government has already filed an application on March 22, 2021 to set aside the December 2020 international arbitral award in The Hague Court of Appeal. Government of India will vigorously defend its case in Set Aside proceedings at The Hague, Finance Ministry added.
On June 11, the French court had ordered Cairn Energy’s take-over of Indian government properties, mostly comprising flat; and the legal process got completed on Wednesday evening.
An arbitration panel had in December ordered the Indian government to return USD 1.2 billion plus interest and penalty to Cairn Energy after reversing a retrospective tax demand.
With Indian govt not honouring the award, Cairn Energy has moved in multiple jurisdictions overseas to recover the amount due by seizing Indian government assets.