The Supreme Court Verdict and the Fall of Anil Ambani’s Non-Empire

Money Matters

The Supreme Court Verdict and the Fall of Anil Ambani’s Non-Empire

Illustration: Arati Gujar

I

t takes a special kind of idiot to land up in the predicament that Anil Ambani currently finds himself in. To be able to take a billion-dollar business that was effectively one half of one of India’s largest corporate empires, and dwindle it down to nothing is no mean feat. It’s the kind of financial mismanagement that Vijay Mallya puts on his vision board and sighs wistfully at every morning.

For those not in the know, Mr Ambani (Jr) is currently being held in contempt by a Supreme Court verdict. As per the rulings, he had refused to pay dues to Ericsson to the tune of some ₹550 crore, despite having the money to do so. In a strange twist of fate, he now needs to pay close to this amount, despite not having the money to do so. Failure to repay will land him in jail for three months. I’m not sure where the Supreme Court equated three months with ₹550 crore, but if that is the conversion rate, I’m happy to spend four hours in prison for the ₹1 crore payout it offers.

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