Swaraj infrastructure Pvt. Ltd vs Kotak Mahindra bank ltd [Civil Appeal no. 1291 of 2019] - Synopsis
Team SoOLEGAL 8 Feb 2021


The Kotak Mahindra Bank (‘Respondent’) had obtained a recovery certificate against Swaraj Infrastructure Pvt. Ltd. (‘Appellant’) from the DRT, Mumbai, but various attempts to auction the secured assets yielded no results.

In consequence, the Respondent filed a winding-up petition against the Appellant, which was admitted by the Bombay High Court.

Aggrieved by the admission of the winding-up petition, the Appellant appealed before the Division Bench of the Bombay High Court and argued that i) once a secured creditor has obtained an order from the DRT, and a recovery certificate has been issued thereupon, such secured creditor cannot file a winding-up petition as the Recovery of Debts and Bankruptcy Act, 1993 (“the RDB Act”) is a special act which vests exclusive jurisdiction in the DRT and ii) a secured creditor can file a winding-up the petition after giving up its security.

However, these contentions did not find favour with the Division Bench, which dismissed the appeals in question. The Appellant thus preferred the present appeal before the Supreme Court.


The Supreme Court has analysed various provisions of the Companies Act, 1956 and the RDB Act to hold that the a winding up petition cannot be referred to as a proceeding for realization of debts and would, therefore, not be covered by the language of Section 17 read with Section 18 of the RDB Act. Further, as winding-up under the Companies Act is not “for recovery of debts” due to banks, the bar contained in Section 18 read with Section 24 of the RDB Act would not apply to such winding-up proceedings. Therefore, the Supreme Court held that a secured creditor is not barred from initiating winding-up proceeding after obtaining a recovery certificate. The Supreme Court further observed that the Companies Act, 1956 does not require the secured creditor to relinquishing its security before filing the winding-up petition. The secured creditor is required to elect on the relinquishment of its security only after the debtor is adjudged insolvent. Although the Supreme Court dismissed the appeal, it held that a secured creditor should not “blow hot and cold” in attempting to avail more than one remedy at the same time to recover its legitimate dues.

Thus, The Hon’ble Supreme Court held that a secured creditor has the right to file a winding up the petition after such secured creditor has obtained a decree from the Debts Recovery Tribunal (‘DRT’) and a recovery certificate-based thereon.


C2RMTo Know More

Something Awesome Is In The Work









Sign-up and we will notify you of our launch.
We’ll also give some discount for your effort :)

* We won’t use your email for spam, just to notify you of our launch.

SAARTHTo Know More

Launching Soon : SAARTH, your complete client, case, practise & document management SAAS application with direct client chat feature.

If you want to know more give us a Call at :+91 98109 29455 or Mail info@soolegal.com