The much-delayed auction of Delhi’s luxury hotel Taj Mansingh is likely to happen on Friday as the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) announced the schedule for the iconic property, said sources familiar with the matter.
Tata Group’s Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL) — the existing operator — and ITC Group will face each other for the prime Lutyens’ Delhi hotel, sources privy to the matter told CNBC-TV18, adding that technical bids for the hotel has been submitted between September 12 and September 20.
The bid includes financial and technical specifications post proposed operational takeover of Taj Mansingh. Taj Hotels and ITC did not comment on the issue.
NDMC has decided to relax the eligibility criteria for bidders and reduce the minimum number of bids required due to failed attempts to auction the hotel.
The auction had to be put off twice as it got less than the required number of bids for the five-star property to go under the hammer.
Now the minimum number of bids has been reduced from three to two. The minimum turnover eligibility has also has been reduced for bidders.
Taj Mansingh was given to the Tata group in 1978 on a lease for 33 years, which ended in 2011. The company was since given nine temporary extensions. However, the civic body could not auction the property then as it was tied up in a legal battle with IHCL.
Earlier, the civic body had issued an annulment notice for the e-auction in June when it had to be cancelled since only the Tata Group’s Indian Hotels Company Limited (IHCL) – the existing operator – had submitted its bid for retaining the property.
The bid for the only other participant, ITC, was not accepted on technical grounds. The re-auction was to be held on July 18 had the NDMC got at least three bids.
With inputs from PTI.