India: Lodha & Co quits as auditor for Grasim

India: Lodha & Co quits as auditor for Grasim
Published: 05 November 2004

Lodha & Company on Thursday resigned as statutory auditors of the AV Birla group¹s diversified flagship, Grasim Industries. The chartered accountancy firm has also ceased to be branch auditors of Grasim¹s divisions, Rajashree Cement and Birla White Cement.

The AV Birla group has appointed city-based GP Kapadia & Co, currently the joint statutory auditors, as sole statutory auditors of the company. The firm has also been entrusted the audit in respect of the company¹s divisions, Rajashree Cement and Birla White Cement.

³The appointment is in accordance with the provisions of law, until the conclusion of the next annual general meeting of the company,² Grasim said. The resignation by Lodha & Co is a fallout of the long tussle between the Birla family members and RS Lodha after the late Priyamvada Birla, widow of MP Birla, bequeathed the entire MP Birla legacy to Mr Lodha, leaving out family members and relatives.

AV Birla group firms Hindalco, Indo Gulf Fertiliser and Birla Global Finance have already removed Lodha & Co as statutory auditors. SR Batliboi has replaced Lodha & Co in Indo Gulf, while Hindalco has asked its branch auditor Singhi & Co to take up additional responsibility as its main auditor. Birla Global Finance has appointed Suresh Surana & Associates as auditors.

BK Birla group company Mangalam Timbers have also removed Lodha & Co as auditor, while the group controlled by SK Birla is also contemplating replacing Lodha & Co as auditors in their group firms, Mysore Cements and Birla VXL.