The government on Monday introduced the Securities Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2014 to amend the laws governing the securities market and provide more teeth to the capital market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi). This will enable Sebi to crack down on fraudulent investment schemes, call for relevant information and records from any person related to a probe while providing for setting of special courts to ensure speedy trial.
Once the Bill is approved, small investors would get protection cover from the ponzi schemes as well.
Once the bill becomes an Act, Sebi would also be authorised to call for information “not only from the people or entities associated with the securities market but also from persons who are not directly associated with the securities market”.
Besides, the market watchdog would get increased powers to crack the whip on illegal investment schemes. The bill aims to protect investors as well as curb fraudulent investment schemes thriving at the expense of gullible investors.
Explaining the objectives of the Bill, the government said it seeks “to protect the interests of investors and to ensure orderly development of securities markets. It has become necessary to enhance the powers of the board”.
The Bill was introduced by minister of state for finance Nirmala Sitharaman in the Lok Sabha.
An ordinance to empower Sebi to deal with ponzi schemes was promulgated thrice during the previous UPA regime but the same could not be passed by Parliament to make it an Act.