The Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered the sealing of nine properties of embattled real estate company Amrapali after its three directors, who are in police custody, said the “bulky” documents related to the group’s 46 firms were stored there and could not be physically handed over to the forensic auditors.
The direction came after the three directors — Anil Kumar Sharma, Shiv Priya and Ajay Kumar — told a bench comprising justices UU Lalit and DY Chandrachud that they were willing to hand over all the documents, which are stored at the seven premises in Noida and Greater Noida and also at two locations in Bihar, but the police was unaware about what all documents to seize.
The apex court then directed the superintendents of police of Noida/Greater Noida to take the three directors to all the seven premises in Uttar Pradesh and seal them in their presence.
It also asked the superintendents of police (SPs) of Rajgir and Buxar districts of Bihar to immediately seal the two premises. After sealing, the keys have to be handed over to the SC Registrar.
Besides, the top court also asked the three directors to give by Thursday undertakings to the effect that “all the documents are available at the above 7 plus 2 places only and that not a single document” pertaining to 46 companies from 2007 to 2018 is kept at any other place and all the documents have been handed over. “The sealed premises can be visited only by the forensic auditors or by other persons under their express authorization. No other person shall be allowed entry into the said premises,” the judges said.
“If the entire exercise of sealing at the seven premises in Noida and Greater Noida is complete, the presence of the three applicants will not be insisted upon by the police. However, if the exercise is not complete, the present status will continue except that these applicants, instead of being put up in the lock up, shall be kept in the police station itself,” according to the order.
The directors told the bench that the company-wise list of all bank accounts were available till 2015 and after that, raw data was available with them and they would hand over all the documents in entirety.
The court is seized of a batch of petitions filed by home buyers who are seeking possession of around 42,000 flats booked in projects of the Amrapali group.
The Supreme Court on Tuesday sent the three Amrapali Group directors, who were present in the court, to police custody till they hand over every document related to accounts of all their 46 group companies to the forensic auditors appointed by the apex court.
Taking note of diversion of Rs 2,765 crore of homebuyers’ money by the group for other purposes, the top court had flayed the Amrapali group for “defrauding investors” and playing “dirty games” with it and directed the auditors to examine accounts of all 46 companies of the group.
SC-appointed forensic auditors Pawan Kumar Aggarwal and Shri Ravi Bhatia had told the bench that only skeletal documents of two companies —Amrapali Zodiac and Amrapali Princely Estates —were handed over and the rest of the documents had not been handed over.