SEBI has petitioned with the Supreme Court demanding the direct deposit of 626 billion rupees ($8.4 billion) that was owed to its investors by Sahara corporation chief, Subrata Roy, and two of his corporations.
SEBI reported that according to court records as shown by Bloomberg, the outstanding liability of the two companies of the Sahara India Parivar group and the group’s president, Roy, stood at 626 billion rupees, including interest. Roy’s liabilities ballooned from 257 billion rupees eight years ago when he was ordered to pay.
Sahara has been in a battle with SEBI over repaying billions of dollars to investors who put their money in a bond scheme- that was later ruled to be illegal. In 2012, India’s Supreme Court ruled that Sahara group companies had violated securities laws and had earned more than $3.5 billion illegally. The firms said the money was collected in cash from millions of Indians who were unable to use banking facilities. SEBI was unable to locate investors and the court sent Roy to jail when the Sahara companies refused to pay up.
“The demand from SEBI is absolutely incorrect,” the Sahara group said in an emailed statement on Thursday. SEBI has added 15 per cent interest “mischievously” and it is a case of double payment as according to the statement, the industries have already paid back the investors.
The case of Roy, featured in the Bad Boy Billionaires Netflix series is among the narratives of fallen business tycoons in Asia’s third-largest economy and the attempts of India to go after the wealthy and famous who refused to pay their dues. Roy has been in prison for over two years. He is out on parole since 2016.
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