NSEL crisis: NK Proteins MD Nilesh Patel held

PTI Posted online: Tuesday, Oct 22, 2013 at 0000 hrs
Mumbai : Managing Director of NK Proteins Ltd, one of the biggest defaulters of the beleaguered National Spot Exchange Ltd (NSEL), was today arrested in connection with the bourse's Rs 5,600 crore scam, taking the total number of arrests in the case to four.

"NK Proteins' MD Nilesh Patel was today arrested in connection with NSEL case," Additional Police Commissioner (EOW) Rajvardhan Sinha said.

NK Proteins was the first company that had borrowed Rs 350 crore from the NSEL, said another police officer adding that "now the company owes the spot exchange about Rs 850 crore to Rs 900 crore that includes the principal amount of Rs 350 crore, interest as well as other payable amount."

"Patel knew that its company would not be in a position to pay back money but still he borrowed Rs 350 crore from the spot exchange, knowing the fact that NSEL cannot lend money. Hence, Patel, in connivance with the NSEL officials misused the investors' amount," the official added.

The company has also used the amount to expand its edible oil business and also entered into a joint venture with Adani group, the officer alleged, adding "hence the books of accounts of the joint venture have also come under scanner and investigators would surely examine the books."

NK Group and the Adani Group's agro trading arm, Adani Wilmar Ltd, had formed a 50:50 joint venture called AWN Agro Pvt Ltd, which became the largest castor oil exporting entity in India.

The EOW officials earlier arrested three accused in the case. Anjani Sinha, former head of the beleaguered bourse, was held on October 17, Amit Mukherjee, an ex-assistant vice-president of NSEL was nabbed on October 9 and the next day Jay Bahukhundi, another ex-assistant vice-president and in-charge of KYC department, was apprehended.

An FIR was registered in the case on September 30 by the EOW against the directors, including Jignesh Shah and Joseph Massey, promoters and defaulters.

All of them have been charged with cheating, forgery, breach of trust and criminal conspiracy and other offences under the Indian Penal Code. On October 1, CBI too registered a preliminary inquiry into the case.

NSEL has been facing problems in settling Rs 5,600 crore dues of 148 members/brokers, representing 13,000 investor-clients after it suspended trade on July 31 on government's direction.