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Court clears results of TMB board elections

A group led by S. Annamalai of the Pioneer Asia Group has won the board elections of the Tamilnad Mercantile Bank defeating the group led by S. Vaikundarajan. The battle for supremacy at the bank has been raging for the last 20 years. The Madras High Court had passed interim orders to the effect that the new 10-member board, which includes PCG Ashok Kumar and Annamalai, will be operational, subject to further orders. In its order, a division bench of Justice V Ramasubramanian and Justice N Kirubakaran said if normalcy has to be restored in the functioning of the bank, a full-fledged board should assume office. This is possible either by declaring the results subject to the outcome of the cases or by nominating someone to the board. The second option is ruled out, since RBI is not agreeable to nominate anyone. Therefore, there is only one option, namely to declare the results and allow the elected directors to assume charge, subject to the outcome of the litigation pending in all these proceedings. “We pass an order declaring the aforesaid 10 persons as having been elected. They are permitted to take charge subject to the ultimate outcome of these proceedings,” the bench said. The result of the election, which was held in Tuticorin on 29 January, to fill 10 board seats, was made available on 1 March. Apart from the elected board members, RBI appointed nominees K.V. Rajan and K.N. Rajan will act as additional directors and board members.

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