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Sebi on Tuesday imposed a total fine of Rs 60 lakh on six firms for failing to register with the regulator's online complaints redressal system within the stipulated time.
The firms -- Adam Comsof, Akash Agencies, Alert Petrogas, Arun Mantex, Bhavi Investments and Bhagwati Cottons -- have been fined Rs 10 lakh each.
In August 2012, the regulator had issued a circular directing all the companies whose securities were listed on stock exchanges to obtain Sebi Complaints Redressal System (SCORES) authentication by September 2012.
"Obtaining authentication on SCORES for processing investor complaints received by Sebi has to be a part and parcel of the corporate responsibility of every listed company," the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) said in an order.
The regulator noted that despite its August 2012 circular issuing a deadline of September 2012 to all listed companies to obtain SCORES authentication, the six firms have failed to obtain the authentication till date.
"Obtaining SCORES authentication inter alia by listed companies was one of the regulatory measures of Sebi to help in enhancing the confidence of the investors and thereby the integrity of the securities markets.
"Hence wilful non-compliance of the same by the noticees (six firms) for a period of five years since the deadline to comply was given by Sebi is a matter of serious concern," the regulator said.