The Supreme Court has observed that Amrapali homebuyers’ money has been diverted illegally and wrongly to Rhiti Sports Management Pvt Ltd, a company promoted by cricketer Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
The observation by justices Arun Mishra and UU Lalit came on Tuesday while cancelling the real estate company Amrapali Group’s Real Estate Regulatory Authority’s licence and appointed state-run National Buildings Construction Corp Ltd (NBCC) to complete all pending projects.
The bench has noted that the Amrapali Group of Companies paid Rs 42.22 crore to Rhiti Sports Management Pvt Ltd between 2009 and 2015. Of this, Rs 6.52 crore was paid by Amrapali Sapphire Developers Pvt Ltd.
The sum was paid on account of agreements executed by Anil Kumar Sharma, CMD of Amrapali Group of Companies, with Rhiti Sports Management Pvt Ltd.
However, the court noted that there was no resolution on record authorizing Sharma to enter into an agreement on behalf of all of Amrapali group of Companies.
The court pointed out other various agreements endorsed between the companies on November 22, 2009, according to which Dhoni will make himself available to the Chairmen for three days along with one representative of Rhiti Sports.
According to the Agreement for sponsorship dated March 20, 2015, Amrapali Group of Companies got the right to advertise as Logo Space at various places in the IPL 2015 for Chennai Super Kings.
“It is observed that this agreement is on plain paper and executed only between Amrapali and Rhiti Sports Management Pvt Ltd and there are no signatories on behalf of Chennai Super Kings to this agreement,” the court noted.
No resolution in favour of Arun Pandey, Signatory of Rhiti Sports, is attached with the agreement.
“This clearly shows that these agreements have just been made for payment of amounts to Rhiti Sports Management Pvt Ltd Co are sham agreements and made just for making payments to Rhiti Sports Management Pvt Ltd,” the court said.
“We feel that home buyers money has been diverted illegally and wrongly to Rhiti Sports Management Pvt Ltd and should be recovered from them as the said agreement in our opinion does not stand the test of law.”
Dhoni was a brand ambassador for Amrapali Group until three years ago.
Dhoni’s wife Sakshi Singh was then a Director of Amrapali Mahi Developers Pvt Ltd, a company incorporated for developing a project in Ranchi. An MoU was also entered between the parties though the court was not provided a copy of that.
The court said in its order that in Amrapali Sapphire Developers Pvt Ltd, a flat had been booked in the name of Rhiti Sports by passing an adjustment entry.
However, Sanjay Pandey of Rhiti Sports denied booking any such flat. Pandey also confirmed that neither the company nor any individual had any flat in Amrapali Group.