Money lying unclaimed in this account for seven years gets transferred to the Investor Education and Protection Fund
With Rs 113 crore, Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) tops the list of companies that have unpaid and/or unclaimed dividends lying with them, Parliament was informed on Thursday.
Dividend payments of a little over Rs 1,101 crore are lying unclaimed with 1,406 companies, Corporate Affairs Minister Sachin Pilot said in a written reply to Lok Sabha.
Payments are required to be made to investors within 30 days of the dividend being declared. Any unpaid or unclaimed amount needs to be transferred to an ‘unclaimed dividend account’ within the next seven days.
Money lying unclaimed in this account for seven years gets transferred to the Investor Education and Protection Fund (IEPF).
Subsequently, no such claims are entertained against the company or the IEPF for any money transferred to the fund in accordance with the relevant provisions.
“An amount of Rs 1,101.35 crore is presently available with 1,406 companies on account of unpaid and unclaimed dividends,” Mr. Pilot said citing data available with ‘MCA 21’ portal.
Individually, energy giant RIL has total unclaimed/unpaid dividends worth Rs 113 crore, followed by FMCG major ITC (Rs 74.34) crore, Hindustan Unilever (Rs 49.05 crore), Hero MotoCorp (Rs 40.22 crore) and Tata Steel (Rs 38.53 crore).
Besides, other companies having sizable money lying with them in form unclaimed dividends include Lakshmi Vilas Bank (Rs 34.14 crore), ICICI Bank (Rs 19.17 crore), Larsen & Toubro (Rs 18.69 crore), MRPL (Rs 14.23 crore) and IDBI Bank (Rs 13.59 crore)
The companies declare annual dividends at their AGMs (Annual General Meetings) and are required to pay the same to the investors within 30 days thereafter.
Other big companies with uncashed dividends lying with them included HDFC Bank, Hindalco Industries, Tata Motors, Cipla, HDFC, Mahindra & Mahindra, Tata Consultancy Services and Jindal Steel & Power Ltd.
Broadly, companies regularly send reminders to the shareholders concerned, requesting them to claim dividend before it is due for transfer to the IEPF.