The Supreme Court on Friday rejected Sahara group’s proposal of refunding Rs. 17,400 crore to investors in three-monthly installments, calling the proposal an insult to the SC special bench.
Sahara chairman Subrata Roy arrives at the Supreme Court in New Delhi. (HT Photo/Arun Kumar)
“You can’t have a bench assemble for a person not willing to pay. You should bring an honourable proposal,” the bench said, turning down Sahara’s plea to pay the first installment of Rs. 2,500 crore up front.
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With the SC not finding the proposal ‘attractive’, Sahara chief Subrata Roy will remain in Tihar jail till March 11, the next date of hearing. The SC, however, allowed Roy’s lawyers and financial consultants to meet him in jail for two hours every day. Sahara’s plea to send Roy in police custody will be also heard on March 11.
The two-judge bench of justice KS Radhakrishnan and justice JS Kehar assembled to hear the case after an urgent appeal by Sahara’s counsel on Friday morning. Sahara sought time till July 31, 2015 to pay the entire sum and asked the court to vacate an order barring the group from operating its bank accounts.
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Market regulator SEBI opposed the proposal, arguing that Sahara had to pay Rs. 34,000 crore and not just Rs. 17,400 crore as claimed by Sahara.
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SEBI counsel Pratap Venugopal also said Sahara’s request for more time had already been rejected by the SC in February.
The bench took exception to Sahara counsel’s contention that raising more money wasn’t possible since Roy was behind bars. “Roy has been out for the last year-and-half and has been behind bars only for the last few days,” the bench shot back.
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