The Supreme Court has held Anil Ambani and two company directors guilty of contempt in the Ericsson case. The top court said that the RCom chairmanwill go to jail for three months if he does not pay Rs 453 crore to the telecom equipment maker within four weeks.

Ericsson had filed the case against Anil Ambani in 2018 for not clearing its dues of Rs 550 crore. Ambani had then asked for a 60-day extension of the deadline which the Swedish company did not agree to.

Anil Ambani
Reliance Communications Chairman Anil Ambani. REUTERS/Shailesh Andrade

The court has also imposed a fine of Rs 1 crore which needs to be deposited within a month failing which they will face one month in jail.

"Three Reliance companies had no intention of payment of money, it amounts to contempt," SC said in its judgment. The Supreme Court added, "Unconditional apology by Reliance can't be accepted given the attitude of the deponent to the highest court of the land."

In early February, the Ericsson said that Ambani's personal assets must be frozen and he shouldn't be allowed to leave the country. In the plea, Ericsson accused SBI of not helping to retrieve the dues from RCom in its capacity as the lead banker during RCom's attempts to sell wireless assets to Reliance Jio. That deal would have fetched cash-strapped RCom about Rs 18,000 crore.

"It is deeply regrettable that Ericsson India Private Limited (Ericsson), an operational unsecured creditor, is attempting a trial by media and sensationalising issues, as evidenced in recent media reports," RCom said in a statement in January. 

The Anil Ambani-led RCom filed for bankruptcy in January after it failed in the completion of the sale of wireless assets to Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Jio.