Home Finance specialist UPDATE 1-Indian billionaire Hinduja family’s truce revealed by London court

UPDATE 1-Indian billionaire Hinduja family’s truce revealed by London court

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(Adds statement by Vinoo and Shanu Hinduja, paragraphs 5, 6, 10 and 11)

By Sam Tobin

LONDON, Nov 11 (Reuters) – India’s billionaire Hinduja family have reached a global truce in a long-running legal row over the future of their global business empire, a London court ruling released on Friday revealed.

The London Court of Appeal has largely dismissed an appeal over restrictions on reporting the dispute, which was challenged in a specialist court in a case centering on the health of 86-year-old Patriarch Srichand Hinduja.

Srichand’s younger brother, Gopichand, 82, had challenged the legitimacy of a lasting power of attorney granted to Srichand’s wife, Madhu, and later daughters, Vinoo and Shanu, in court of protection, which takes decisions on financial or social matters for those unable to do so.

“The Hinduja family’s matter regarding the health and welfare of SP has already been amicably resolved between all parties and today’s judgment relates solely to whether these matters should remain private. “said a spokesperson for Gopichand Hinduja and his brothers Prakash and Ashok, but not Srichand. in an emailed statement.

Srichand’s daughters, Vinoo and Shanu Hinduja, said in a separate emailed statement that they welcomed “the transparency this decision will bring to the proceedings”, but said a final agreement had yet to be reached.

“While we are pleased that the dispute surrounding our father’s health and welfare has been resolved, a final resolution regarding the broader disputes has yet to be reached,” they added.

The Hinduja family’s business covers sectors such as banking, chemicals and healthcare and employs around 200,000 people worldwide and their vast wealth puts Srichand, Gopichand and the Hinduja family at the top of the Sunday’s rich list Times UK this year, with a net worth of over 28 billion pounds ($33 billion).

Judge Anthony Hayden said in a ruling in August, which was released on Friday, that the needs of Srichand, who suffers from dementia, had become “sidelined in a family dispute”.

Hayden said in August he was “led to consider placement in a public nursing home” for Srichand after his family could not agree on how and where he should be treated.

“We have – as any other child would have – cared for our parents and worked for their best interests,” Vinoo and Shanu Hinduja said in their statement.

“Our top priority has been to ensure that our parents’ wishes are granted and that their dignity and well-being are protected,” the sisters added.

The spokesman for Gopichand Hinduja and his brothers Prakash and Ashok said the High Court’s ruling had ‘no bearing on the continued care of MSP Hinduja, on which the family is united, nor on business operations‘ .

“The family looks forward to continuing a harmonious relationship in the future,” the spokesperson added.

The proceedings in the protective court did not involve Prakash or Ashok Hinduja.

Decisions published on Friday revealed that the family had asked the court in June to end “all existing disputes between them in all jurisdictions”, including one which began at the High Court in London in 2019 over the assets of the Hinduja family.

Srichand had asked the court to rule that a July 2014 letter signed by him and his three brothers Gopichand, Prakash and Ashok saying all assets held in their names belonged to all four of them, had no ‘legal effect’ .

A 2020 judgment in that case said his three siblings had relied on the letter “as a basis for seeking to take control of Hinduja Bank, an asset in [Srichand’s] unique name”.

That dispute is now resolved, per Hayden’s decision.

The Court of Appeal decision said the Hinduja family had entered into “a confidential agreement” to settle the disputes in London and abroad.

The 2020 judgment previously said the family was engaged in litigation in Switzerland and Jersey. (Reporting by Sam Tobin; Editing by Alexander Smith)