Top court puts sale of Fortis to IHH on hold, says report

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(Dec 14): Shares of India's Fortis Healthcare Ltd posted its biggest intraday fall in over 8½ months after a CNBC TV18 report said the country's top court put its sale to Malaysia's IHH Healthcare on hold.

Shares fell as much as 14.3% to 130 rupees, their lowest since Oct 30, in a heavy trading session where more than 15.9 million shares were traded by 0704 GMT, compared to their 30-day average of about 2 million shares.

Cash-strapped Fortis, which operates about 30 private hospitals in India, accepted an investment offer from IHH in July after an extended bidding war for control of the company.

Japanese pharmaceutical firm Daiichi Sankyo Co Ltd had moved to Supreme Court filing a contempt plea against Malvinder and Shivinder Singh, alleging that they created encumbrances on 1.2 million shares of Fortis in violation of court orders, the CNBC TV18 report added.

The court also issued notices to founders Malvinder and Shivinder, who are under probe by the market regulator for allegedly siphoning funds from the hospital operator, the report said.

The brothers have denied the allegations.

Reuters could not reach Malvinder and Shivinder for comment, while Fortis and Daiichi did not immediately respond to request for a comment.

(US$1 = 71.7350 Indian rupees)