Vepa Kamesam, former deputy director of the RBI, has resigned from the High Mark Board as independent director. The troubled credit bureau, which urgently needs an injection of money to remain viable, allotted 70% of its ESOPs to four independent directors, including Mr Kamesam and its chairman Prof Pandya
Moneylife’s reports on the affairs at the troubled and cash strapped High Mark Credit Information Services Pvt Ltd (High Mark Credit Bureau) seems to have claimed its first victim. Vepa Kamesam, one of the most high profile directors has resigned from the High Mark Board. However, it is not clear as to what would happen to the 1.63 lakh shares that Mr Kamesam was allotted.
Mr Kamesam, a former deputy governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) was one of the four directors who, along with Prof Anil Pandya, chairman and founder-director of High Mark, bagged 70% of the employee stock ownership plan (ESOP). Mr Kamesam was allotted 1.63 lakh shares in the credit bureau as ESOPs.
According to sources, High Mark violated Credit Information Companies Regulations (CICR) Act, 2005 (CICRA) as well as Companies Act, while appointing Prof Dr Anil Pandya as its executive chairman. The issue was first raised by Siddharth Das, former Chief Operating Officer (COO) of High Mark, before the company board. But the board, including Mr Kamesam, apparently ignored it.
High Mark never appointed Prof Pandya on a full-time basis. The prefix ‘Executive’ before chairman was supposed to give the impression that he is a full-time employee in the nature of a CEO. Even as Prof Pandya continues to work on a part-time basis, the credit bureau also did not appoint any whole-time director or managing director. This clearly violates Regulation 9 (2) of the CICRA for which the board should be made responsible.
Subsequently, Das sent a legal notice raising this issue. Ajay Kohli, former chief executive of High Mark, tried to bring this to the attention of the board. This too has been ignored so far by the company Board.
As Moneylife reported earlier, High Mark's four independent directors, Dipankar Basu (1.63 lakh), Vepa Kamesam (1.63 lakh), Rajiv Johri (6.53 lakh) and Shyam Sunder Suri (6.53 lakh) and its chairman Prof Anil Pandya (3.27 lakh), together hold 70% of ESOPs. Of these, while Prof Pandya was designated executive chairman in position, if not in responsibilities, the other four directors have had little operating roles.
The board also allotted 1.9 lakh ESOPs to Kiran Moras, its senior vice-president and 2.7 lakh to Siddharth Das, its executive vice-president and chief operating officer. These options lapsed due to the resignation of both these officials. While Moras resigned on 21 March 2012, Das left High Mark on 20 March 2012. We learn from reliable sources that Prof Pandya has been indiscriminately sacking senior officials who are in the process of filing litigation.
Meanwhile, High Mark seems to be operating on the understanding that the Italy-based CRIF credit bureau will be allowed to bailout the Credit Bureau quite easily. We learn that CRIF executives have already been meeting senior executives to assure them of support and continuity after takeover. This development suggests that CRIF is completely confident of a green signal to acquire High Mark although the business is ostensibly strictly regulated by the RBI.
There is no evidence that Mr Kamesam has been perturbed by this alleged violation of the CICR Act and the possible action by the RBI. Of course, it remains to be seen whether the RBI will act atleast now, following resignation of Mr Kamesam, a former deputy governor of the central bank.
Mr Kamesam was appointed as deputy governor of RBI on 1 July 2001 and his tenure ended in 2003 after getting extensions twice. He was the first deputy governor of the RBI to hold the position even after crossing the age of 62 years.
Prof Pandya and Dipankar Basu (a former IAS officer of the Gujarat cadre and also an independent director of High Mark) did not respond to repeated text messages. Our email query addressed to Mr Basu and to Prof Anil Pandya was also not answered at the time of publication. Their response, if any, will be incorporated when it is made available.
High Mark is a start-up promoted by Prof Pandya and Anuj Desai. In 2005, Professor Pandya founded High Mark and in 2007 the company applied to the RBI for a license to operate as a credit bureau.
The Central District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum also observed that Max New York Life issued the policy with terms and conditions, which were different from the terms and conditions told to the complainant
New Delhi: Max New York Life Insurance Company Ltd been ordered by a consumer forum to pay Rs20,000 as compensation to the grandfather of a policy holder for issuing a policy with terms and conditions different from what was told to him, reports PTI.
The Central District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum also observed that the insurance company had refunded the premium amount received from the complainant after he had filed a complaint.
"From the pleadings and undisputed evidence of the complainant, we find that the complaint has got merit. The insurance company issued the policy with terms and conditions, which were different from the terms and conditions told to the complainant.
"We believe in the case of the complainant. The insurance company returned the amount after filing of the complaint. It had enough time before filing of the complaint to refund the amount as the complainant made several oral requests and also sent letters, representations and legal notice etc as pleaded," the bench presided by BB Chaudhary said.
It directed Max New York Life to pay Rs15,000 as damages and Rs5,000 as litigation cost to the complainant.
The forum's order came on the plea of Delhi resident Krishan Lal Nagpal who had alleged that the insurance firm had issued him a policy which had terms and conditions different from what was told to him by its agent.
Nagpal had applied for an insurance policy in the name of his grandson for a period of five years, but he was issued a policy for a period of 10 years instead, he had alleged.
The insurance company was proceeded against ex-parte as no one appeared on its behalf despite the notice issued to it.
Traffic was smooth as police lifted restrictions near India Gate and Raisina Hill, which witnessed violent weekend protests. Nine Metro stations, which were closed since Sunday morning, were reopened for public from last evening
New Delhi: Police eased traffic restrictions at India Gate and Raisina Hill but did not lift prohibitory orders even as protests over the gang-rape of a girl calmed down, reports PTI.
Questions were also raised over the cause of a Constable's death during demonstrations.
A journalism student Yogendra, who claimed to be an eye-witness, contradicted police version that Constable Subhash Tomar was beaten up by protesters leading to his death, saying he fell down on his own.
Delhi Police declined to be drawn into the controversy with its spokesperson Rajan Bhagat saying "no comment till the post mortem report is out".
Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar had said that Tomar had suffered internal injuries in his neck, chest and stomach and were waiting for the post mortem report to ascertain the exact cause of his death. Tomar died yesterday morning.
Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party demanded sacking of Commissioner Kumar alleging that police was misleading people by arresting eight "innocent youth" in connection with the incident.
Doctors at Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital said the Constable had no major external injury marks when he was brought to the hospital and that he had suffered a heart attack.
"I was at India Gate with a female friend who was injured. I saw one policeman who was running after protesters and then suddenly collapsing. We rushed towards him and some policemen were also there. Suddenly, the policemen started running after other protesters.
"So I rushed to a nearby PCR van. They took him to hospital. I also went in the same vehicle. I saw him in hospital and his body didn't have any injuries. He wasn't trampled by a mob, he wasn't assaulted. The claims of police are false. I am surprised to hear that 8 were arrested over Subhash Tomar's death," he claimed.
Traffic was smooth as police lifted restrictions near India Gate and Raisina Hill, which witnessed violent weekend protests. Nine Metro stations, which were closed since Sunday morning, were reopened for public from last evening.
Reacting to Yogendra's claims, Kejriwal said his account was opposite of what police said. "Is police lying?" he asked.
AAP leader Yogendra Yadav also alleged that the TV footage showed opposite of what the police was saying.
"Police claims the rioters had hit him, he was trampled upon by protestors and this is why he has collapsed. The footage showed he collapsed on his own. The evidence is in the public domain, it suggests the contrary," he said.
AAP chief Spokesperson Manish Sisodia alleged police was "politicising" Tomar's death to cover their mistakes and demanded that Kumar be sacked.
"Delhi Police should have dealt with the matter with sensitivity and honoured the constable's death. But, the police have politicised the death to cover their own mistakes.
We feel that the Delhi Police are involved in a conspiracy.
The police commissioner should be sacked," he said.