Anil Ambani marks presence in Supreme Court

New Delhi, Nov 24 ( Industrialist Anil Ambani Tuesday marked a surprise presence in the Supreme Court where a dispute is being heard over supply of gas to his group company Reliance Natural Resources Ltd (RNRL) from Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), led by his brother Mukesh Ambani.

“My presence in the honourable Supreme Court today reflects my deepest regard and respect for our judiciary,” Anil Ambani said, emerging out of the courtroom where a three-member bench headed by Chief Justice K.G. Balakrishnan is hearing the case.

“I have come here today not just on my own behalf but on behalf of the nearly 11 million shareholders of the Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group — the largest shareholding family in the world — whose interests will be directly affected by the outcome of this case.”

The bench, which also comprises Justice B. Sudershan Reddy and Justice P. Sathasivam, is hearing the dispute over the supply of 28 million units of gas for 17 years at $2.34 per unit to RNRL from the gas fields off the Andhra Pradesh coast, awarded to RIL.

The price, tenure and quantity were based on a family re-organisation pact of 2005, but RIL subsequently said it could only sell the gas for $4.20 per unit, as this was the price, the company claimed, fixed by the government.

The Bombay High Court had given its verdict in favour of RNRL, which was subsequently challenged in the apex court.