SC directs NDMC to e-auction Taj Mansingh Hotel

A bench comprising of Justice Pinaki Ghosh and RF Nariman of Supreme Court directed New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) for e- auction of the five star hotel, Taj Mansingh in Delhi Lutyens zone. It was earlier managed the Tata Company and now by Tata Group firm Indian Hotels Company (IHCL). The Supreme Court asserted that if Tata loses the e-auction it has to vacate the premises within 6 months. The property belonging to NDMC was leased from 1976 to 2011 i.e. for 33 years. Nine temporary extensions were granted to the company on various grounds. Earlier in March, in a meeting Arvind Kejriwal, member of NDMC announced its decision to auction the hotel. “We have taken a decision to hold an e-auction. It would be an open auction. We will decide the date once the Court permits us” Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain appearing for NDMC told the bench. After that the IHCL approached the Delhi High Court with a plea to issue directions not allowing for auction, which got dismissed. In November 8, 2016, IHCL moved to the Apex Court saying that there was no necessity to auction as the hotel is generating good revenue for the civic body. In January 2017, NDMC was directed by the Apex Court to review its decision with the opinion of Attorney and Solicitor General of India. NDMC was given 6 weeks’ time to review its decision. This decision was supported by the Ministry of Home Affairs stating that “companies cannot exploit good relations with the Government”.

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