Supreme Court allows Essar plea on sales tax dues

The Supreme Court has directed Essar Oil to pay Rs1,000 crore to the Gujarat government towards sales tax\VAT dues by 30 July so that the coercive steps already taken by state government could be stayed.

Essar Oil today said it has offered to pay this amount and has made a submission to the court in this regard.

If Essar Oil pays an amount of Rs1,000 crore to the Gujarat government by 30 July, the state government's move to seize the company's bank accounts to recover the sales tax liability of around Rs6,300 crore would be stayed.

Essar Oil would also get a waiver on penalty and interest of around Rs2,000 crore.

The SC would now hear the matter after 30 July.

Essar Oil, meanwhile, said it is in advanced discussions with domestic lenders for putting in place a $1 billion (Rs5,000 crore) loan facility as a contingency measure for use in the event that the sales tax liability becomes payable immediately or in case the company fails to negotiate a satisfactory repayment schedule.