Regulations
SAT sets aside Rs4 lakh penalty imposed by SEBI

SAT, while setting aside the SEBI order said that violations committed by the DSE Financial Services are mostly technical in nature and in some cases it has taken corrective measures

Mumbai: The Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) has set aside a Rs4 lakh penalty imposed by market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) on a subsidiary of Delhi Stock Exchange (DSE) in April this year for not complying with certain rules, reports PTI.

 

In its order, SAT said that violations committed by the DSE Financial Services (DSFSL) are mostly technical in nature and in some cases it has taken corrective measures.

 

"The three violations committed by the appellant (DSFSL) are mostly technical in nature, some of them are solitary instances and for others the appellant has mostly taken corrective measures.

 

"In view of this, we are of the view that the adjudicating officer (of SEBI) was not justified in taking punitive action (against DSFSL)," SAT said. Consequently, SAT has set aside the "impugned order" passed by SEBI.

 

It further said, "We have also observed that every minor discrepancy/irregularity found during the course of inspection is not culpable and the object of the inspection could well be achieved by pointing out the irregularities/ deficiencies to the intermediary at the time of inspection and making it compliant."

 

SEBI had conducted an inspection of DSFSL during 8-23 February 2007 with regard to its activities as a stock broker and also as a depository participant of Central Depository Services (India) Ltd.

 

In an order dated 10 April 2012, SEBI had imposed a fine of Rs4 lakh on DSFSL for violating rules of functioning of its office and belongings.

 

"In exercise of the powers conferred upon the adjudicating officer under section 15 I of the SEBI Act...a penalty of Rs4 lakh has been imposed under sections 15F and 15 HB of the SEBI," the market regulator had said in a notification.

 

"...considering all the facts and circumstances of the case, ... a suitable penalty (Rs4 lakh) needs to be imposed on the noticee for the aforesaid violations or non-compliances," it had added.

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SAT dismisses International Paper appeal in AP Paper case

The two-member SAT bench found that the International Paper and promoters of AP Paper Mill have failed to provide SEBI with sufficient evidence to justify payment of non-compete fee to 15 promoter entities

 
New Delhi: The Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) has dismissed a petition by International Paper against a Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) direction concerning payment of non-compete fee by it to erstwhile promoters of Andhra Pradesh (AP) Paper Mill, which has been acquired by the global company, reports PTI.
 
The SAT, however, gave a four-week reprieve International Paper to allow it to appeal before the Supreme Court.
 
International Paper, a global paper and packaging firm, had entered into an agreement in March 2011 to acquire 53.46% stake from the promoters of AP Paper for Rs1,112 crore.
 
As part of the agreement, an exclusivity fee of Rs21.20 per share was also to be paid to the promoter group sellers.
 
However, SEBI said that only five out of 20 promoters of Andhra Pradesh Paper Mill were entitled for non-competence fee and asked International Paper Company to revise the offer price for the rest 15 promoters.
 
The two-member SAT bench found that the buyers and sellers in the deal have failed to provide SEBI with sufficient evidence to justify payment of non-compete fee to 15 entities.
 
"We, therefore, do not find any merit in the appeal and the same is dismissed with no order as to costs," said SAT.
 
Earlier, on 11 August 2011 passing an interim order SAT had directed the company to go ahead with the public offer after depositing a sum in an escrow account calculated on the basis of Rs130.73 per share.
 
"The appellants may now pay the balance amount to the shareholders who had offered their shares in the open offer, within a period of six weeks from the date of this order," the tribunal said.
 
SAT, however, on the request of the acquirers has put its order in abeyance as they wanted to explore possibilities to approach the Supreme Court in order to challenge the order.
 
International Paper Company along with IP Holdings Asia has made an open offer to acquire additional stake in Andhra Pradesh Paper Mill.
 

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SEBI notifies new governance rules for depositories

SEBI has issued new rules for depository participants, NSDL and CDSL related with the composition of their boards, salaries of top officials and their listing

 
New Delhi: Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has notified new governance rules for the depositories including those related to composition of their boards, salaries of top officials and their listing, reports PTI.
 
Depositories are those entities that hold securities deposited by others and where these securities are exchanged, while depository participants (DPs) largely function as agents of the depositories and as intermediaries between the depository and the investors.
 
In India, there are two major depositories, National Securities Depository Ltd (NSDL) and Central Depository Services Limited (CDSL).
 
As per the regulations notified by SEBI, a depository board would have to include shareholder directors, public interest directors and managing director.
 
Besides, the chairperson would have to be elected from amongst the public interest directors, whose number cannot be less than the number of shareholder directors.
 
On the other hand, the Managing Director cannot be included in either the category of public interest directors or shareholder directors.
 
SEBI said that all directors would have to abide by the Code of Conduct specified under its regulations and a compensation committee would determine the pay of key management personnel.
 
SEBI said that a depository may apply for listing of its securities on a recognised stock exchange, subject to certain conditions.
 
Also, depositories would need to segregate its regulatory departments from other departments and would need to have a 'Business Continuity Plan' for data and electronic records to prevent, prepare for, and recover from any disaster.
 
In order to ensure the segregation of regulatory departments, every depository shall adopt a "Chinese Wall" policy which separates the regulatory departments of the depository from the other departments.
 
The employees in the regulatory departments shall not communicate any information concerning regulatory activity to any one in other departments.
 
The employees in regulatory areas may be physically segregated from employees in other departments including with respect to access controls.
 
In exceptional circumstances employees from other departments may be given confidential information on "need to know" basis, under intimation to the Compliance Officer.
 

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