The government on Wednesday approved a proposal to amend the SEBI Act to empower capital market regulator Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI) to conduct search and seizure operations, access call data records and crack down on ponzi schemes to prevent financial fraud involving gullible small depositors.
This comes after a similar scandal allegedly involving Kolkata-based Saradha group.
The decision was taken at a Union cabinet meeting on Wednesday, sources said.
After the amendments are enacted, SEBI would be able to directly carry out search and seizure operations and seek information from telephone call data records to prevent any swindling. Under current rules, SEBI can carry out search and seizure operations only after judicial approval from the chief metropolitan magistrate.
SEBI would also be given powers to seek information, of persons or organisations that it suspects.