SC to hear Sebi plea on arrest of Subrata Roy on April 22

Written by feBureau | New Delhi | Updated: Apr 5 2013, 06:34am hrs
The Supreme Court on Thursday decided to hear on April 22 market regulator Sebis plea seeking orders to arrest the head of the Sahara conglomerate, Subrata Roy, and its three directors, who allegedly have failed to comply with the court's order to repay R24,000 crore collected from investors through optionally fully convertible debentures (OFCDs).

With this, the apex court has also agreed to hear Sebi's plea seeking initiation of contempt against the two Sahara firms and the brass for failing to comply with its last year's orders asking them to refund R24,000 crore raised from investors through OFCDs by November 30 last year.

Sebi had last month filed a new application requesting the apex court to permit its whole-time member to take measures for arrest and detention in civil prison of promoter Subrata Roy Sahara and the two male directors, viz., Ashok Roy Choudhary and Ravi Shankar Dubey. It also wanted Roy, and the three directors, including Vandana Bhargava, to deposit their passports and bar them from leaving the country without its prior permission.

Sahara, a household name for its sponsorship of the national cricket team, owns the Grosvenor House hotel in London and last year bought the Plaza Hotel in New York.

Sebi senior counsel Arvind Dattar mentioned the matter for urgent hearing before the bench headed by Justice KS Radhakrishnan, who agreed to hear both the applications on April 22.

The apex court had on Februray 6 issued contempt notice to its two group companies Sahara India Real Estate Corporation (now known as Sahara Commodity Services Corporation) and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation and Roy and the three directors for non-compliance of its August 31, 2012 directions that ordered attachment of properties and freezing of bank accounts of the companies in case of any default.

Pursuant to February 6 order, Sebi on February 13 had ordered a freeze on the assets and bank accounts of two Sahara Group companies, saying they had failed to heed a Supreme Court order to repay investors in the case involving more than R24,000 crore. Around 100 bank accounts of the group were affected by the order.