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Accusing Sebi of acting in haste on the issue of refunding Rs 24,000 crore to investors, Sahara group urged the Supreme Court to help it get out of the "imbroglio".
The two group firms — Sahara India Real Estate Corp and Sahara India Housing Investment Corp — said there is no wilful disobedience on their part in complying with the apex court's order on refunding the money to investors through Sebi and questioned the market regulator's conduct against them.
“This case is going to stagnate if no consequential order is passed by the court. There was no intent to interfere with the course of justice,” senior advocate Rajiv Dhawan told the bench of justices KS Radhakrishnan and JS Khehar.
Sahara's counsel Ram Jethmalani also submitted that Sebi refused to accept the documents, which were provided by them on time giving details of investors, and instead filed a contempt petition against them.
Sebi performing as a quasi judiciary authority should have acted reasonably and with fairness and complied with the apexc court's, he said, adding Sebi should go through the papers submitted by Sahara and determine whether R5,120 crore deposited by Sahara is sufficient to cover the outstanding amount or is there any deficiency. Jethmalamni also pointed out that whilst the interest of investor is to be protected, it is equally important that investors are not paid twice.
Another senior counsel S Ganesh, arguing on behalf of Sahara Real Estate Corporation, pointed out the document submitted by Sahara after relentless efforts were rejected by Sebi on a baseless ground that the documents were ‘hopelessly mixed up’ and the application forms and redemption vouchers were deliberately separated by Sahara. The court was hearing contempt petitions filed by Sebi against Sahara chief Subrata Roy, the two firms and their directors.