SEBI lines up reforms to check flow of black money

Capital markets regulator, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), will soon put in place stricter norms to check any flow of black money into stock market though controversy-ridden P-Notes and also initiate steps for allowing mutual fund investments through e-wallets.

Besides, SEBI will consider this week new norms for allowing options trading in commodity derivative market, while rules would be relaxed for registration of foreign investors and for common licence to brokers to deal in equities and commodities, sources said.

The SEBI board will meet on Wednesday, which would be its first meeting under the chairmanship of Ajay Tyagi, who took charge on March 1.

Among a slew of reform measures, the SEBI board will also consider making it easier for banks and financial institutions to get shares of the companies they have exposure to by way of conversion of loan into equity — a move seen as a major boost to the steps for handling the bad loan menace.

Taking stock of probes

The SEBI board will also take stock of long-pending investigations and cases, involving some big corporates, and will consider putting in place an internal guidance note for dealing with quasi-judicial matters.

Besides, it would also discuss the implementation of graded surveillance measures by the stock exchanges to check any manipulation of share prices.

The markets regulator will also consider new guidelines for dealing with offshore derivative instruments, commonly known as participatory notes (P-Notes), which have been long seen as being possibly misused for routing of black oney from abroad.

While SEBI has tightened its norms repeatedly over the recent years to check any loophole, the government now wants the regulator to explicitly impose restrictions on resident Indians and NRIs from being ‘beneficiary owners’ of these instruments.