Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has managed to auction 30 luxury cars out of 47 owned by controversial PACL Ltd (erstwhile Pearl Agrotech Corp) that would help it garner about Rs30 crore, says a report.
Quoting Bhanu Kumar, regional manager of MSTC, which conducted the auction, the report from Business Standard, says, ""It was an excellent auction. About 109 bidders participated. 30 vehicles have been sold. The total sale value was around Rs30.5 crore. The remaining 17 vehicles could not meet the reserve price."
SEBI is selling these vehicles owned by PACL under the aegis of Supreme court-appointed Justice RM Lodha Committee. The Lodha committee is supervising the Supreme Court ordered process of selling PACL's assets across the country and refunding Rs49,100 crore collected from over 56 crore investors.
Among the vehicles that were put on sale includes a Rolls Royce, a Bentley, a Porsche and several other luxury cars and sports utility vehicles (SUVs) including Jaguars, BMWs, Audis and Lexus.
The apex court in an order on 2 February 2016 set-up a committee headed by its former chief justice RM Lodha to sell assets of PACL to refund investors Rs49,000 crore collected through collective investment scheme that were held as illegal by market regulator SEBI.
Directing that no court in the country would entertain any plea in respect of the sale of PACL assets, the bench also restrained the PACL from going for any more investments from the public.
The court directed the committee to appoint experts to assists in the sale of land and directed the SEBI to appoint a nodal officer to for investor grievances.
The money to be refunded to the investors was allegedly collected by PACL and Pearls Golden Forest Limited - two companies belonging to Nirmal Singh Bhangoo-managed group - in the name of sale and development of agricultural land.
"India's premier policing body and its corporate regulator have sent teams to Australia in recent days in an attempt to recover the money they claim was defrauded from investors in India's $10 billion Pearls Ponzi scam. It (the Indian government) will also conduct investigations into dealings in Australia into what it terms a 'larger conspiracy'," the report filed by Greg Bearup and Anthony Klan says.
According to The Australian, the Indians have been assured that they will receive assistance to help recover the money and to investigate any crimes that may have been committed in Australia. India's Central Bureau of -Investigations claims that between 2009 and 2013 at least $133 million was illegally siphoned off by the directors of Pearls India - four of whom are now in jail awaiting a trial - and sent to Australia.