Claiming that a recent agreement calling for the sale of a majority stake in wireless phone provider Hutchison Essar (HE) to Vodafone of Great Britain would violate India’s foreign ownership laws, Telecom Watchdog, an Indian consumer advocacy group, has asked a Delhi court to block the deal. The $11.1 billion transaction, through which Vodafone would emerge with the 67% HE stake held by Hutchison Telecommunications International, was announced last month. Sources also report that Vodafone and Indian conglomerate Essar—the holder of the remaining 33% stake in HE—finalized an agreement yesterday that spells out Essar’s shareholding and board representation rights and that also calls for a renaming of HE as Vodafone Essar. According to Indian law, foreign direct investment in domestic telecom ventures is prohibited beyond a threshold of 74%. Asserting that HE’s current structure includes a 22% stake held by the Essar Group through a foreign offshore company, the petition claims that Vodafone’s purchase would push foreign ownership in HE beyond the 74% cap mandated by law. Noting that HE has received regulatory approval for its current structure, Hutchison dismissed the suit as “entirely without merit.”