In a set back to market regulator the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi), the Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) today retained its order that allowed PriceWaterhouse to cross examine the audit firm's members, who had acted as witnesses in the Satyam fraud case, to come out clean.
SAT had allowed PW to go ahead with the cross examination of its members, a move that was opposed by Sebi which filed the review petition with the tribunal.
SAT said, however, the market regulator could approach the Supreme Court in case it wants a review of the order.
"The points now sought to be raised in the review application may be taken in the appeals, if filed, in the Supreme Court. We find no ground to review our order dated June 1, 2011. Consequently, the application is rejected," SAT said.
The members include Srinivas Talluri, CH Ravindranath, P Siva Prasad and N Ramu. In an order in December 2010, Sebi had rejected the plea of PW and others to cross examine them.
PW moved SAT against it.
Upholding the contention, the SAT order said, "We are of the view that there has been violation of principles of natural justice in not allowing cross-examination of the witnesses whose statements are being relied upon in the show-cause notice and also in not making available copies of the statements which have been relied upon by the board in issuing the show-cause notice."
The order pertains to enquiry in the Satyam case, which came to light after the company's founder B Ramalinga Raju admitted in January 2009 to fudging of books of accounts.
Satyam Computer was later taken over by Tech Mahindra and renamed as Mahindra Satyam.