Telenor asks Sanjay Chandra to step down as Unitech Wireless Chairman

Telenor asks Sanjay Chandra to step down as Unitech Wireless Chairman

Uninor is a joint venture between Telenor and Indian firm Unitech Wireless Limited, a subsidiary of realty firm Unitech.

"Telenor Group has earlier this month sent a letter to Unitech Ltd, requesting Sanjay Chandra to step down as Chairman of the Board of Directors in Unitech Wireless," Telenor said in a statement.

Telenor Group has asked Unitech to appoint a substitute for Sanjay Chandra for as long as the 2G court case is going on in India.

"Withdrawing from the Chairman position is the most appropriate and decent thing for Sanjay Chandra to do given the current circumstances. It is of vital importance that the running business of our Indian operation is not hampered," said Glenn Mandelid, Director of Communications for Telenor Group region Asia in the statement.

"As a responsible shareholder, Telenor believes that Unitech, in the best interest of Unitech Wireless, should appoint a replacement for Sanjay Chandra as soon as possible," Mandelid added.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) charge-sheet names the managing Director of Unitech, Sanjay Chandra, and also names Unitech Wireless for actions when it was a fully owned Unitech company, prior to Telenor Group entering India.

"Telenor Group supports transparency and predictable frameworks for the telecom industry. Telenor has zero tolerance for corruption, and if the CBI trial proves any malpractice, those responsible must be brought to book," said Mandelid.
"However, no charges have been proven and we expect Sanjay Chandra to defend himself in court," he said.

Telenor has invested Rs 6,100 crore in Unitech Wireless and holds 67.25 per cent ownership share.

Recently, some differences had emerged between Telenor and Unitech over rights issue which is now in the court. While board of Unitech Wireless had approved for rights, Unitech has opposed the move and approached court against decision of Unitech Wireless board.

Court has stayed the rights issue approval by Uninor board. Telenor further approached court to vacate the stay. The matter is sub-judice and is due for hearing