Friday, August 11, 2023

Court says lessors can inspect aircraft at India's Go First

India's Supreme court has dismissed an appeal by the resolution professional managing the Go First (G8, Mumbai International) insolvency against an order allowing lessors to inspect their aircraft.

On August 7, the court, that country's top judicial authority, refused to interfere with an early July ruling by the High Court of Delhi that allowed lessors SMBC Aviation Capital, CDB Aviation, Aviation Capital Group, SKY Leasing. DAE Capital, Carlyle Group, and Merx Aviation Finance to access to airport aprons to inspect their aircraft and engines.

"We are not entertaining this at the present stage," ruled the three judges hearing the matter. They said since the High Court was hearing the matter on a day-to-day basis, it would not interfere. "Let the jurisdictional issues also be addressed before the (High Court) single judge."

Ramji Srinivasan, representing Go First and its resolution professional, Shailendra Ajmera, said he went to the Supreme Court in contravention of orders from the High Court but was seeking clarity over conflicting orders issued by that court and India's bankruptcy court, the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT). Whereas the High Court had issued orders permitting the lessors access, an appeal by Ajmera to the NCLT later in July resulted in a conflicting ruling and barred lessors or their agents from inspecting their aircraft.

Go First suspended its operations in early May and are presently attempting to relaunch. However, as reported in ch-aviation, lessors want to repossess every aircraft in the Go First fleet. But attempts to do so are being thwarted by the NCLT, which is demonstrating a distinct trend towards favouring distressed airlines over distressed creditors.

11/08/2023 ch-aviation

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