Sebi has asked Sahara India Commercial Corporation, Subrata Roy and the company's other former directors to return over Rs 14,000 crore raised from millions of investors through optionally fully convertible debentures (OFCD) without complying to regulatory norms.
Besides barring these entities from the capital markets for four years, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) has ordered them to refund the money along with 15 per cent annual interest.
Sebi found that Sahara India Commercial Corporation (SICCL) had made an offer of OFCDs in financial years 1998-2009 and raised an amount of at least Rs 14,106 crore from 1,98,39,939 investors.
The regulator, in 2011, already ordered two Sahara group firms -- Sahara India Real Estate Corporation Ltd (SIRECL) and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation Ltd (SHICL) -- to refund the money raised from investors through OFCD route.
"I am of the view that SICCL engaged in fund mobilising activity from the public, through the offer of OFCDs and has contravened the provisions of ...the Companies Act," Sebi Whole Time Member Madhabi Puri Buch said in a 54-page order passed Wednesday.
Accordingly, the regulator has ordered SICCL, Subrata Roy, O P Shrivastava, J B Roy, A S Rao, Ranoj Das Gupta, as well as legal representatives of late D S Thapa, late P S Mishra and late Y N Saxena, to jointly and severally refund the money collected by the company through the issuance of OFCD along with an interest of 15 per cent per annum.
As per the order, all these individuals were former directors of the company.
SICCL has been directed to provide a full inventory of all the assets and properties and details of all the bank accounts, demat accounts and holdings of mutual fund, shares and securities if held in physical form and demat form, of the company.
"SICCL and Subrata Roy are permitted to sell the assets of the company for the sole purpose of making the refunds as directed above and deposit the proceeds in the Sebi Sahara refund account. Such proceeds shall be utilised, with the permission of the Supreme Court of India, for the purpose of making refund/repayment to the investors of SICCL," the regulator noted.
In case of failure of respective entities to repay, Sebi, on the expiry of three months, may recover such amounts.
SICCL, Subrata Roy and other former directors have been barred from accessing the securities market "till the expiry of four years from the date of completion of refunds to investors".
Besides, Sebi has barred Sahara India from the securities markets for four years.
Sahara India - a partnership firm belonging to the Sahara Group with Subrata Roy as managing partner - acted as "arranger" to the OFCD and facilitated the issue as merchant banker.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)