SC Asks Sahara Chief to Disclose Assets by May 11
Links outcome of Sebi’s efforts to sell the assets to Roy’s freedom
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday asked jailed Sahara chief Subrata Roy to make a full and faithful disclosure of all his assets by May 11, and linked his freedom to the outcome of the market regulator’s efforts to sell 60 properties of the group.
As in the case of Vijay Mallya, Roy will have to disclose details of all his assets both at home and abroad to the court in a sealed cover. The results of the first round of e-auctions, to be conducted by HDFC Realty and SBI Capital Markets to sell Sahara’s properties, may also come in by then.
Roy has been in jail for over two years now, after the group failed to meet the Supreme Court’s 2012 order to pay more than .₹ 20,000 crore to the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) to be returned to investors in two Sahara investment schemes. With interest and penalty, the arrears have since swelled. Sebi mandated the sale of the properties after Sahara failed also to deposit the .₹ 10,000 crore that the Supreme Court had set as a condition to free the jailed chairman.
The sale is expected to rake in at least .₹ 16,000 crore based on the circle rate for these properties, according to Sahara. The process is expected to be complete in four months.
Sahara had already paid a major chunk of the .₹ 5,000 crore cash component needed to free Roy, senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan said. It has yet to furnish bank guarantees for a similar amount to take the total to .₹ 10,000 crore. Now that more than 60 Sahara properties were in virtual receivership of the market regulator and could be sold, Dhavan sought parole or house arrest for Roy, without waiting for the results of the sale.
But a bench comprising Chief Justice TS Thakur and Justices Anil R Dave rejected the plea, instead suggesting that the court would prefer to wait for the results of the first round of auction.
Sebi’s lawyers, meanwhile, pointed out that there were issues over the title of these properties and there was no way of knowing how much money would come in.
The bench then sought a report from Sebi on the auction results by May 11, when it would hear Roy’s plea for freedom.
The list of 60 Sahara properties that Sebi is looking to sell doesn’t include the prime Amby Valley project and properties in Vasai. The group’s hotels abroad are also not on the list.