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The Sahara Group has claimed that the actions taken by SEBI were based on “old facts” and the orders for attaching assets of individuals are incorrect on part of the market regulator
The Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) will hear an appeal by industrialist Subrata Roy Sahara on Thursday, whose group is mired in a long-running dispute with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) in connection with refund of money raised from public through issuance of bonds.
Two Sahara firms, Sahara India Real Estate Corporation and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation, were asked by the Supreme Court to refund to investors an amount totalling over Rs24,000 crore, which they had raised through issue of bonds. After the expiry of a deadline set by the court, SEBI said that the companies have not complied with the orders and issued attachment orders against the bank accounts and other assets of the two firms and their top officials, including group chief Subrata Roy.
Besides, the market regulator has also issued public notices cautioning the general public and investors against dealing with the two Sahara group firms and their top executives due to an order for attachment of their assets. The Supreme Court had passed its first order in this case on 31 August 2012 and SEBI was asked to facilitate the refund.
In December 2012, the group was allowed to pay the money in three instalments, including an immediate payment of Rs5,120 crore, followed by an instalment of Rs10,000 crore in January first week and remainder by February first week. The Sahara Group has paid Rs5,120 crore to SEBI and claims that this amount itself is more than the total outstanding liability towards the bondholders of the two companies.
In its attachment orders last month, SEBI said that neither of the two instalments was paid and therefore it was taking necessary action as per the Supreme Court orders. The regulator said it has ordered “attachment of all movable and immovable properties, bank accounts and demat accounts of these two companies and that of its promoters and directors namely Subrata Roy Sahara, Vandana Bhargava, Ashok Roy Choudhary and Ravi Shankar Dubey.”
The Sahara Group has claimed that the actions taken by SEBI were based on “old facts” and the orders for attaching assets of individuals are incorrect on part of the market regulator. In an unusual development last week, Sahara group also claimed that it fears income tax raids on it at SEBI’s behest.