India's top court has deferred a verdict on troubled financial services group Sahara India Pariwar's petition seeking permission to raise more debt on its three overseas hotels, key to securing bail for its imprisoned chief Subrata Roy.
The Supreme Court, on 17 December, sought further details from Sahara on the proposed plan to mortgage the three assets, including London's Grosvenor House, following objections from Indian markets regulator Sebi.
Judges said the court will hear the case next on 9 January, 2015, according to reports.
Mortgaging the London hotel, alongside two properties in New York – the Plaza and the Dream Downtown hotels – will help the group raise 30.7bn rupees ($482m, £307m, €387m), Sahara lawyer Rajiv Dhawan told the apex court on 2 December.
Sahara, which already has an over $900m loan from the Bank of China on the three hotels, had sought the court's authorisation to take over the loan and refinance it from another creditor, and raise a fresh loan of $650m.
Sahara needs to deposit an initial $1.6bn to secure bail for Roy, 66, held in a New Delhi jail for over nine months in a protracted dispute over refunding billions of dollars to Indian investors in outlawed bonds.
Roy has tried to sell the three hotels from his prison's guest house, but no deals have been struck so far.
Roy has been in New Delhi's Tihar jail since 4 March after two group companies - Sahara Housing and Sahara Real Estate - failed to comply with the apex court's order to refund $3.9bn to 30 million investors.