SC Asks Sa­hara Chief to Dis­close As­sets by May 11

Links out­come of Sebi’s ef­forts to sell the as­sets to Roy’s free­dom

The Economic Times - - Companies: Pursuit Of Profit - Sa­man­waya.Rau­tray @times­

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.

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