Markets regulator Sebi has ruled out any “abeyance” of 25 per cent public float norm deadline for PSUs and said it cannot decide on extending the time limit and wants the government to take a decision. As per guidelines of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi), government stake in PSUs should be 75 per cent or less by August 2017. “There is a proposal from the (central government’s) department of investment and public asset management that the August 2017 deadline will be too close (for all PSUs to bring down government holding to a maximum of 75 per cent). They have brought up some arguments.
“However, extension of the deadline cannot be done at Sebi’s level. The issue has been referred to the finance ministry, which will take a view on that. The deadline is not in abeyance. The ministry needs to take a view on this,” Sebi Chairman Ajay Tyagi said.
Earlier, the finance ministry had requested Sebi to extend the August deadline for PSUs to meet 25 per cent public float norm as it mulls various options to pare government stake in state-run banks.
There are some public sector banks (PSBs) wherein the government holding is above 75 per cent. Post second round of capital infusion in March, the government stake in some more banks could go beyond 75 per cent.