The debt-ridden newspaper publishing house Deccan Chronicle Holdings Limited received another jolt on Thursday when non-bailable warrants were issued against its directors in a cheque bounce case.
The warrants were issued by a Chandigarh court following a complaint filed by Religare Enterprises, which said the cheques made out by DCHL for repayment of loans to its non-banking financial services arm Religare Finvest, bounced. A team of police officials were in town on Thursday to execute the warrants, but could not do so till late on Thursday evening.
When contacted, Religare Enterprises Group chief executive officer Sachindra Nath confirmed that cases were indeed filed and warrants issued against the DCHL directors. The cheques, it was learnt, were signed by M.S. Reddy, who quit the media house last December.
Meanwhile, an annual general meeting of the company was held on Thursday at the Deccan Chronicle Printing Press at Serilingampally here to discuss the case. The AGM had earlier approved the amount borrowed by the company in the past, beyond the approved limits.
In the AGM held on July 27, 2007 borrowing funds up to Rs. 1,000 crore was authorised. However, in its filing to stock exchange on January 22 this year, DCHL said its liabilities, included an amount Rs. 3,987.5 crore due to lenders. This was a result of restructuring operations and recast of financial statements. With debts spilling past Rs. 4,000 crore, the AGM passed a resolution authorising the Board of Directors to borrow in excess of the paid up capital and free reserves of the company.
At the meeting changes were made in the Board of Directors as vice-chairman T. Vinayak Ravi Reddy was redesignated as managing director and vice-chairman.
The appointments of V. Lakshmana Charya, Venkateswarlu Malapaka and Suresh Srinivasan as independent directors were also approved at the meeting, according to the DCHL’s filing to the stock exchange.