Sebi on Friday moved the Supreme Court seeking arrest of Sahara group promoter Subrata Roy and barring him from leaving the country after two companies of the group failed to comply with court's order to refund Rs. 24,000 crore to its investors.
The market regulator mentioned the matter before a bench headed by Justice KS Radhakrishnan which agreed to hear its plea and posted the case for hearing in the first week of April.
Sebi urged the court to allow it to "take measures for arrest and detention in civil prison of promoter of Sahara Subrata Roy Sahara and the two directors -- Ashok Roy Choudhary and Ravi Shankar Dubey -- after giving reasonable opportunity of hearing."
Sebi also sought direction that their passports be deposited with the Supreme court.
Sahara group and Sebi are locked in legal dispute over the refunding of 24,000 crore by its two companies--Sahara India Real Estate Corporation (SIREC) and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation (SHIC)--to its investors.
Earlier, the last hope of Sahara group to get more time to refund Rs. 24,000 crore to its investors was today dashed in the Supreme Court which dismissed its plea and pulled it up for not complying with the court's earlier order to return the money by first week of February.
A bench headed by Chief Justice Altamas Kabir, which had earlier extended the deadline to two companies of the group for refunding the money from November end to first week of February, had refused to grant more time.
SIREC and SHIC along Roy are facing contempt proceedings in the apex court before another bench which had on February 6 allowed Sebi to freeze accounts and seize properties of its two companies for defying court orders by not refunding the money to investors.
Later in the evening, Sahara group issued a statement claiming that Sebi has asked for civil detention of the promoter and directors of the company "knowing fully well that such provisions of Code of Civil Procedure (CPC), prescribing the same as a mode of execution of decree do not apply to Sebi..."
The group further claimed that "under the Sebi Act, the application of CPC is clearly barred and ruled out and also the fact that no question of any such non-compliance, on the part of Sahara officials do arise in view of the entire unpaid amount having been deposited with Sebi and the records of redemption made submitted to them for verification".
Sahara group also accused Sebi of leaking information to media and of seeking media publicity by filing the status report and Interlocutory Application (IA) in the Supreme Court.
The statement said that the Court "did not find any urgency and advised for listing of the matter in due course, after Holi vacations".
Sahara also claimed that it has repaid all the outstanding liabilities expect for an amount of less than Rs. 5,120 crore, which it has paid to Sebi.