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Tandoori's files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, remains open

Tandoori’s Royal Indian Cuisine has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, but plans to remain open during the reorganization process.

“Tandoori’s has filed a Chapter 11 reorganization case because this will allow us to repay some of our long term business debts over a longer period of time than would be possible outside of bankruptcy,” said Ravi Sabharwal, Tandoori’s vice president. “Other than that, we will be continuing our business as usual. No employees are being let go.”

The restaurant, at 7740 Transit Road, Amherst, estimated in its bankruptcy filing that it has $50,000 to $100,000 in assets, and about $200,000 owed to outside parties. The asset listing does not include the restaurant’s Transit Road real estate, worth about $1.6 million, which is held by a separate corporation owned by Sabharwal and his wife Rita, the restaurant’s owner, said Tandoori’s spokeswoman Puja Raman.

The corporation’s total debts are about $2.2 million, according to the filing. Of that, about $2 million is owed to the Sabharwals themselves. That’s money that the owners put into the corporation personally, which shows their dedication to keeping the restaurant viable, Raman said.

Among listed debts was $174,401 in sales taxes and interest owed to the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance. A 2014 Tandoori’s tax return included in the filing listed gross receipts of $762,161.

Also filing personal Chapter 11 bankruptcy was Ravi Sabharwal. In 2014, Ravi Sabharwal pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to filing a false tax return. In that case, the U.S. government alleged Sabharwal had told undercover IRS agents that he was under-reporting restaurant receipts to lower tax payments.

[Read the dining review of Tandoori's from Feb. 24]

“Tandoori’s has been our labor of love for almost 25 years,” said Sabharwal. “While we have had our challenges over the last couple of years, we have every intention of continuing to provide a fine dining experience to our beloved community. We feel that this reorganization will put us in the best position to serve our customers for years to come.”

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