Fortis Healthcare gets notice from Registrar of Companies

Hospital chain Fortis Healthcare said it received a notice from the Punjab and Chandigarh office of Registrar of Companies asking for information.

The company did not clarify what the information was related to, but it is likely that it is related to the corporate affairs ministry’s inquiry into allegations that the promoters siphoned off money from the company.

Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh, the brothers who founded the medical empire comprising Ranbaxy and Fortis, allegedly siphoned off around Rs 500 cr from the hospital chain without taking board approval, according to media reports.

The funds were reported on the balance sheet of Fortis Healthcare Ltd. as cash and cash equivalents, but the money was routed and placed under the control of the Singhs at the time, Bloomberg reported quoting unnamed sources.

The same report also quoted Fortis officials as saying that the funds were ‘loaned’ and repayment of the same was on.

On its part, Fortis Healthcare refused to speculate on the nature of the current inquiry by the RoC.

It said information was demanded under section 206 (1) of the Companies Act. The section simply says that the RoC can demand extra information if it feels the need for the same.

The deadline for the submission is March 3.

“The company is in the process of collating the said information and will be sharing the same in due course,” Fortis said of the RoC demand.

“The financial implication/compensation/penalty and quantum of claims has not be referred in the aforesaid letter and hence cannot be ascertained,” it added.