Free Press Journal

Essar lenders to move court against slurry pipeline sale

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Mumbai : The State Bank of India (SBI)-led lenders are planning to approach court against sale of a raw material pipeline by Srei Infrastructure Fund to a consortium of Russian bank VTB and one of the Ruia brothers. The pipeline delivers iron ore to Essar Steel and the consortium is one of the bidders for the bankrupt steel firm. Banks claim that Srei is not the real owner of the pipeline and holds no right to sell it to a third party. The bidding process of Essar Steel ended on Monday and ArcelorMittal and VTB became the two bidder for the distressed assets of the company. Odisha Slurry Pipeline Infrastructure runs a 253-km pipeline supplying iron ore from mines deep in the hinterland to Essar’s pellets plant in Paradip, Odisha.  Its ownership has changed hands twice in the past few years. In 2015, Essar Steel sold its holding in the pipeline to Srei.