Firm Profile > Mulla & Mulla & Craigie Blunt & Caroe > Mumbai, India

Mulla & Mulla & Craigie Blunt & Caroe
MUMBAI 400 001

Shipping Tier 2

Mulla & Mulla & Craigie Blunt & Caroe has 'unparalleled experience in the shipping' sector, fielding a 'hugely knowledgeable' team of lawyers that provides 'practical advice' on a range of contentious and non-contentious matters. The admiralty practice has notable expertise handling arrest proceedings, cargo claims, enforcement of foreign judgments as well as transactional matters. Ship finance expert Shardul Thacker, who is 'a go-to shipping lawyer in India', heads the team.

Practice head(s):

Shardul Thacker

Other key lawyers:

Pooja Kapadia; Siddharth Thacker; Pratiksha Avhad


‘The firm has good turnaround time which helps clients close transactions within the defined timelines.’

‘The firm’s client service in the matters pertaining to international shipping finance, the team’s industry knowledge, expertise in maritime laws and experience in dealing with shipping and offshore industries in India gives them an edge over others.’

‘Shardul Thacker provides timely and practical advice on a variety of subject areas. He is our ‘go to’ lawyer for complex matters in India.’

Projects and energy Tier 3

Led by Shardul Thacker, the projects and energy team at Mulla & Mulla & Craigie Blunt & Caroe acts for local and foreign clients. It handles PPP projects, contracts, investments, licensing, development as well as dispute resolution. Particular areas of expertise include LNG and oil and gas matters.

Practice head(s):

Shardul Thacker

Firm has always promoted diversity and is an equal opportunity employer. The firm has encouraged employees of all strata, society and religion including handicap lawyers, economically backward classes and scheduled classes. There is an equal mix of male and female combination across all categories, partners, lawyers, paralegal, general staff etc.

The firm encourages doing pro-bono work for NGOs, including commitment for corporate social responsibility by way of legal aid to non-profit organisations, in the health and education sectors.

Name of the Client: UltraTech Cement Ltd

Matter Summary: Advising UltraTech Cement Ltd, an Aditya Birla Company and India’s largest exporter of cement and manufacturer, on their disputes with an American based international commerce, trade, distribution and marketing company. Under a CFR Sale Contract the vessel was laden with client’s coal cargo for transportation from UBT berth, Davant, Louisiana to India with a deep draft of 46 feet upon loading. Disputes arose when the maximum allowable freshwater draft was reduced at the Southwest Pass directly resulting in the vessel getting detained and being unable to navigate with the fully loaded quantity of the contract cargo.  Appointing and instructing Blank Rome LLP for their advise on any exposure to any US laws and regulations, pollution claims and third party claim.

Name of the Client: Tata Steel Limited and Tata Steel Global Procurement Company Pte. Ltd.

Matter Summary: Advising Tata Steel Global Procurement Company Pte Ltd, Singapore (TSGP) a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tata Steel in their claims against a leading Zuric based bank Credit Suisse AG for arresting the vessel m.v. Maverick Gunner in Singapore for enforcement of their mortgage, when the said vessel was carrying cargo belonging to TSGP.

Appointing Singapore lawyers Dentons Rodyk & Davidson LLP for prosecuting TSGP’s action before the Singapore Courts for transhipment of cargo laden on the arrested vessel. Co-ordinating and advising on applications filed before the Admiralty Judge Ms. Belinda Ang.

Advising TSGP in their pursuit against the bank for a tort committed by them on the basis of the decision of The Myrto [1977 2 Lloyds Rep 243]. The claim involved multi-jurisdictional aspects as the mortgage was a Greek mortgage for which expert opinion was sought on Greek law on the duty of good faith of the mortgagee bank in respecting quiet enjoyment rights of third parties.

Appointing and instructing HFW, London on the arbitration instituted by TSGP against the charterers, Norvic Shipping North America Inc, a Canadian company for their failure to procure the immediate release of the Vessel or cargo

Name of the Client: Mitsui O.S.K. Lines

Matter Summary: Joint Venture between and Swan Energy Limited and Swan LNG Private Limited and and Gujarat Maritime Board and Gujarat State Petronet Limited and FSRU Venture India One Private Limited (Indian subsidiary of Mitsui & Co.)

Acted for Mitsui O.S.K. Lines’ Indian subsidiary in the joint venture transaction, advised on the structure of the transaction in line with the sectoral caps of the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Policy, FEMA Regulations, advised on the RBI pricing Guidelines for Mitsui’s subsidiary investment in the Indian JVC which is inter alia engaged in the business of setting up India’s first Floating Storage and Regasification Unit (FSRU) project to be set up on the west coast of India for import of LNG in India, advised on various provisions of the Companies Act, 2013 and the applicable Company Rules, conducted due diligence, issuing the DD Report on the Indian joint venture company, participating in negotiations, preparing and finalizing transaction documents –Joint Venture Agreement, Deed of Pledge, O&M Contract, FSRU Construction Supervision Agreement, FSRU Pre-Order Technical Support Agreement, preparing and finalizing closing documents such as Board Resolutions for subscription and allotment of shares, appointment of Mitsui’s nominee directors, advising on stamp duty implications and other regulatory compliances.

Name of the Client: Tata Steel Limited

Matter Summary:  Acting and advising Tata Steel Limited (TSL) on their claims against the owners of a vessel for contamination of two grades of coal cargo discharged at a Port in the East coast of India which arose on account of the Master’s error in the stowage plan. Appointing and instructing Clyde & Co to represent TSL, negotiating the Letter of Undertaking with The Swedish Club representing the owners and advising further on a proposed LMAA arbitration.

Name of the Client: Hoegh LNG AS

Matter Summary: Advising Hoegh LNG AS and its affiliates on the Indian law requirements in relation to the floating storage re-gasification units (FSRU) operations at Jaigarh port, Maharashtra. In this relation reviewing the relevant transaction documents viz. term sheet, charter documents, various crew documents viz. collective bargaining agreements, manning supplier agreement, etc. Providing extensive advice especially on the crewing requirement of a foreign flagged vessel operating in Indian waters, procedure for obtaining exemption therefrom, applicable social security benefits, etc.

Name of the Client: Armada (Singapore) Pte Ltd.

Matter Summary: Acting for a Singapore based ship owning company Armada (Singapore) Pte Ltd. (presently under Judicial Management) who entered into two long term Contract of Affreightment’s (COA’s) with an Indian based charterer viz. Ashapura Minechem Ltd. for transportation of bauxite to be supplied by Ashapura and transported by Armada. In view of the breach of COA’s, Armada invoked arbitration and commenced arbitration in respect of each of the COA’s in England and successfully obtained awards against the charterer. Armada filed two Section 48 petitions in the Bombay High Court for enforcing the Awards which proceedings have now attained finality and the Awards are now enforceable as a decree against Ashapura. Currently representing Armada in execution proceedings against Ashapura as decree holders for claims amounting to approximately USD 97 million and wherein we have obtained an interim order for disclosure by Ashapura of its assets and an order restraining Ashapura from selling/ alienating or in any manner disposing of its assets pending the hearing of the execution proceedings.

Name of the Client: JSW Infrastructure Ltd.

Matter Summary: Obtained successful Order in the Writ Petition before the Bombay High Court:

Represented and appeared for and on behalf of JSW Infrastructure Ltd. in a complex robust litigation filed by Chaucer Capital Ltd, a foreign investment fund in relation to allotment of an All-Weather captive jetty/port at Nandgaon, District Thane to JSW Infrastructure Ltd. by Maharashtra Maritime Board.

Appearing before the Bombay High Court for and on behalf of JSW Infrastructure Ltd, drafting Affidavit in reply to the Writ Petition of Chaucer Capital, Affidavits in Sur Rejoinders and Additional Affidavits.

The dispute and challenge relates to allotment of All Weather captive jetty to JSW under the 1995 and 2005 Policy of the Government of Maharashtra for promotion of industries. Our firm challenged the foreign investment fund’s eligibility criteria under the New Port Policy 2010, as a port developer for allotment of said captive jetty/port.

We have obtained successful orders from the Bombay high Court in the said Writ Petition. The said Writ Petition filed by the private equity fund is dismissed pursuant to the Bombay High Court Order.

Name of the Client: DVB Group Merchant Bank (Asia) Ltd. (‘DVB’)

Matter Summary: Acting for DVB Group Merchant Bank Asia Ltd. a Singapore based leading bank in relation to enforcement of 2 loan facilities of US$ 46,000,000 and US$ 42,215,587 advanced to GOL Offshore Limited (“GOL”) whereby six Indian flag vessels owned by GOL were secured to DVB under the loan facilities. Assisting DVB by filing a Suit in the Bombay High Court for enforcement of DVB’s rights as mortgagees under the loan agreement and for recovery of the loan amounting to US$ 42 million. Assisting DVB in attaching the monthly charter hire earnings of US$ 900,061 per month earned by the five vessels chartered in India to be paid directly by the charterers Oil and Natural Gas Ltd. and Shipping Corporation of India to DVB in a complex heavily contested litigation. Assisting DVB by selling the six Indian flag vessels by a Court supervised auction whereby five vessels were located in Indian waters and one vessel was located in Brazil. Successfully obtaining orders for deposit of purchase monies of the six vessels with the Bombay High Court towards the claim of DVB as secured creditors under the loan facilities. Currently representing DVB in the litigation where priorities of claims will be determined by the Court on the purchase monies deposited with the Bombay High Court and for payment out of the purchase monies to DVB as secured creditors.

Name of the Client: Salchi Metalcoat S.r.l.

Matter Summary: Acting for Salchi Metalcoat S.r.l., Italy (engaged in the business of manufacturing and distribution of coatings and inks for coil and metal packaging) in summary and winding up proceedings before the Bombay High Court against Colour Roof (India) Ltd. (CRIL), who committed breach of the terms of the Supply Agreement. Our client successfully obtained a decree (USD 8 lakhs plus interest) from the High Court. The decree got transferred to the execution Court in Panvel and thereafter properties of CRIL were attached by a Court Order. When the properties were about to sell under a Court auction, an objection application came to be filed by Bank of India, who claimed that they are the secured creditors and all the assets of CRIL have been mortgaged in their favour as first charge for securing the repayment of various loans availed by CRIL (approx. 13.36 million). Since the objectioner bank did not take any active steps in proving their claim, our client filed an application to strike out their defence. At the same time, our client obtained an order restraining CRIL’s directors from leaving the country without leave of the execution court as also surrendering their passports. CRIL thereafter entered into Consent Terms with our client to settle the matter and agreed to make the payments in 6 instalments. The Bombay High Court vide its order dated 14/12/17 accepted the undertaking given by the Managing Director of CRIL and taken on record the Consent Terms.  We played a major role in this matter as our client was an unsecured creditor and that all the properties of the judgement debtor were mortgaged to banks to secure their alleged claim of USD 13.36 million, and that they were endlessly obstructing the execution. With our aggressive steps, our client’s dues got paid off in instalments while the secured creditor’s claims still continue.

1Name of the Client: BNS Asia Limited

Matter Summary: Acted for BNS Asia Limited in relation to the amendments to the loan facilities of USD 50,000,000, USD 32,000,000 and USD 39,000,000 each advanced to the Great Eastern Shipping Company Limited and assisting the Bank with the various vessel swaps, interalia, by creating first priority, second priority and third priority mortgages over the vessels Jag Aditi and Jag Pankhi in respect of the aforesaid loans respectively and discharging the existing security over the vessels Jag Viraj and Jag Pradip.