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Supreme court issues contempt notices to Sahara firms

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times  New Delhi, July 24, 2013
First Published: 19:36 IST(24/7/2013) | Last Updated: 19:40 IST(24/7/2013)

The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued contempt notices on two Sahara firms, Sahara India Real Estate Corporation and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation, for not complying with its earlier order to refund around Rs. 19,000 crore to those who had invested money in the schemes floated by the companies.
 
“You must give a definite answer by Tuesday,” said a bench of Justice KS Radhakrishnan and Justice JS Khehar while adjourning the case for July 30 on plea of the companies. It further warned the Sahara group from taking further adjournments in the matter and made it clear that no further time would be given to the companies.
 
The court order came on a contempt petition filed by market regulator SEBI alleging the firms have failed to pay the amount within the time frame fixed by the SC on December 5 last.
 
On July 17 the bench had threatened to summon Sahara chief Subrata Roy and directors of its two companies personally if its order to refund the investors wasn’t complied.
 
 A bench then headed by Chief Justice Altamas Kabir (since retired) had on December 5 extended time for the companies to  pay back Rs. 24,000 crore along with 15 per cent interest to over three crore investors.
 
An immediate payment of Rs. 5,120 crore was also ordered. The balance had to be deposited with SEBI in two instalments by early February. The first instalment of Rs. 10,000 crore was to be paid by the first week of January 2013 and the remaining  by first week of Feburary.
 
Though the group gave a draft of Rs. 5,120 crore on December 5, it has failed to pay the rest.
 
The SC had on August 31 last directed the two Sahara companies to refund the money to their investors within three months.

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