Don’t manipulate courts: SC to Sahara chief

Apr 23, 2013 | Pratirodh Bureau
Supreme Court on Monday pulled up Sahara Group and its chief Subrata Roy for not responding to the contempt plea filed against them by SEBI.
The top court has given Sahara a week’s time to file a reply on the contempt petition filed by Sebi. The next hearing is scheduled for May 2.
Supreme Court also slammed Sahara Group for approaching Allahabad HC and other forums in a case pertaining to refund of Rs 24,000 crore to its investors.
“You are manipulating courts and this is going on,” SC said to Sahara.
The bench said, wWe are not interested in parties. If you have done this (moving HC) then it is a contempt of this court. Even approaching SEBI is contempt. It is very strange that you seek extention of time from SEBI after Supreme Court’s order and you file appeal after appeal,” the bench said, adding “You must remedy your mistakes instead of repeating the mistakes.”
Meanwhile, the apex court stated that SEBI is to deposit money of untraced investors of Sahara with the Centre.
SEBI urged the court to allow it to “take measures for arrest and detention in civil prison of Subrata Roy, Ashok Roy Choudhary and Ravi Shankar Dubey after giving reasonable opportunity of hearing.”
SEBI also sought direction that their passports be deposited with the Supreme court.
Sahara group and Sebi are locked in legal dispute over the refunding of 24,000 crore by its two companies Sahara India Real Estate Corporation (SIREC) and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation (SHIC) to its investors.
SIREC had collected Rs 19,400.87 crore on March 13, 2008 and SHICL had collected Rs 6,380.50 crore. But the total balance on August 31 is Rs 24,029.73 crore after premature redemption.
The apex court had on August 31 last year directed the two companies of Sahara group to refund around Rs 24,000 crore to their investors within three months with 15 per cent interest per annum for raising the amount from its investors in violation of rules and regulations.
Later, the group in December, 2012 was allowed to pay the money in three instalments, including an immediate payment of Rs 5,120 crore, followed by an installment of Rs 10,000 crore in the first week of January and remainder by the first week of February 2012.
However, neither of the two instalments was paid by the group. Following which, Sebi has already ordered attachment of properties of the two companies and their top officials including group chief Subrata Roy.