SC asks SEBI to conclude hearing against auditing firm in 6 m

Supreme Court today directed SEBI to complete in six months its enquiry proceedings against global auditing firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in a corporate fraud case involving Satyam Computer Services Ltd.

A bench headed by Chief Justice J S Khehar also directed the market regulator to provide the statements of witnesses recorded and the documents collected for inspection to PwC.

The bench, which also comprised Justices N V Ramana and D Y Chandrachud, said the statements recorded during the probe and is relied upon, should also be offered to the firm for cross-examination purposes.

"We direct that the statements and documents recorded shall be provided for inpsection. In so far as reliance of statements recorded during the course of investigation shall also be offered for cross examination. We direct that enquiry proceedings should be completed within six months from today," the bench said.

The apex court also pulled up SEBI for not supplying the documents and statements of witnesses to the firm.

"You are just following the trend to challenge every order before the higher court," the bench told SEBI counsel senior advocate C U Singh.

The senior advocate said SEBI was not relying on those statements and documents and if the market regulator relied on those documents, then those will be given to the audit firm.

SEBI is investigating the role of the auditing firm that worked for Satyam between 2000 and 2008.