Sahara Group unable to pay Rs. 10,000 crore for Subrata Roy’s bail

The Supreme Court on Thursday made it clear that its March 26 order directing Sahara group to deposit Rs. 10,000 crore as a condition for the release of Subrata Roy and two other Directors was not an order of punishment but enforcement of part repayment to depositors.

A bench of Justices K.S. Radhakrishnan and J.S. Khehar refuted the suggestion that the amount of Rs. 10,000 was a bail bond for the release of the contemnors. Justice Khehar observed, “We are not on punishment at all at this stage. We are only on enforcement of our orders. We will deal with the punishment for contempt of court when we conclude the hearing. Any suggestion that Mr. Roy and two other directors were jailed under contempt charges was irrelevant at this stage.”

Justice Khehar said, “The total amount repayable was Rs. 37,000 crores with interest. What we said at least 50 per cent of the principal amount of Rs. 20,000 should be repaid.”

Earlier senior counsel Aryama Sundaram submitted a fresh proposal that Sahara had no money to deposit Rs. 10,000 crores as directed by the court for the release of Mr. Roy and others from Delhi’s Tihar jail. He said Rs. 2,500 crores would be deposited immediately and another Rs. 2500 crores within 21 days soon after the release of Mr. Roy and others. He suggested that the court should hear the fresh proposals on Friday so that Mr. Roy could get bail on affordable conditions. .

Senior counsel Rajeev Dhavan suggested that Mr. Roy and two others be kept in house arrest. Justice Radhakrishnan said “We are hearing the petition (questioning the March 4 order) and we are in a hurry to finish the case. You have money to pay thousands of crores in cash, why not you pay Rs. 10,000 crores as directed.” The court declined early hearing and posted the matter on April 9.