The Supreme Court on Thursday agreed to hear Sahara Group’s plea seeking modification in its order restraining Subrata Roy from going abroad till the Group hands over title deeds of its properties worth Rs. 20,000 crore to SEBI.
A bench headed by Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan, before whom the matter was mentioned by Sahara’s counsel, said that it will consider the Group’s plea on Friday in chamber.
Sahara had moved the apex court on October 29, claiming that there was a mistake in its October 28 order restraining Mr. Roy from leaving the country till it hands over title deeds of its properties to SEBI.
The bench had on Wednesday refused to pass any interim order for allowing Mr. Roy to go abroad before his Group files a review petition seeking to modify the earlier order.
Senior advocate C.A. Sundaram, appearing for the Group, had submitted that he is not seeking review of the order but only pointing out the difference in the decision which was uploaded on the Supreme Court website and the order passed in the open court.
The counsel had submitted that while passing the order, the apex court had said if documents are not handed over to the market regulator within three weeks only then Mr. Roy would be restrained from going abroad.
Holding that it was playing “hide and seek” and cannot be trusted any more, the court had directed Sahara Group to hand over title deeds of its properties to SEBI.
Making it clear that there is no “escape” from depositing the investors’ money with the market regulator, the apex court had asked Sahara to also give valuation reports of properties to SEBI which will verify worth of assets.
The court was hearing three contempt petitions filed by SEBI against Mr. Roy, the two firms — Sahara India Real Estate Corp Ltd. (SIREC) and Sahara India Housing Investment Corp Ltd. (SHIC) — and their directors.
It had on August 31 last year directed the Sahara Group to refund Rs. 24,000 crore by November end. The deadline was further extended and the companies were directed to deposit Rs. 5,120 crore immediately and Rs. 10,000 crore in first week of January and the remaining amount in first week of February.
The group, which had handed over draft of Rs. 5,120 crore on December 5, 2012 has failed to pay the rest of the amount.
It had directed the two companies to refund the money to their investors within three months with 15 per cent interest per annum. It had also said SEBI can attach the properties and freeze the bank accounts of the companies if they fail to refund the amount.
The two companies, their promoter Mr. Roy and directors Vandana Bhargava, Ravi Shankar Dubey and Ashok Roy Choudhary were told to refund the collected money to the regulator.