DELHI: Sahara chief Subrata Roy Thursday sought modification of the Supreme Court's March 26 order setting a condition of depositing Rs.10,000 crore, as a part payment of the investors' money that the group's two companies had collected, for his release from judicial custody.
Sahara India Real Estate Corporation Ltd. and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation Ltd. had collected Rs.24,780 crores from 3.3 crore investors through optionally fully convertible debentures (OFCDs)which the apex court by its Aug 31, 2012 order had directed it to return to investors by routing it through market regulator, Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).
At the outset of the hearing, senior counsel C.A.Sundaram sought the modification of court's March 26 order, saying that Sahara chief be allowed to deposit Rs.2,500 crore in the first instance, another Rs.2,500 crore within 21 days and 60 to 90 days for arranging the bank guarantee for the balance amont of Rs.5,000 crore.
However, Roy's counsel later told media persons that even for the payment of initial Rs.2,500 crore would require lifting of the freeze of the accounts of SIRECL and SHICL by
The court was also asked to allow Roy to stay under house arrest instead of his continued detention in Tihar jail. Senior counsel Rajiv Dhawan told the court that it would facilitate Roy meeting people for arranging the finances for his release.
"You have money in thousands of crores.. that too in cash. It is just Rs.10,000 crore," the court observed as Sundram pressed for an early hearing of the application on Friday.
Just to drive the point that Sahara chief was in real difficulty, Sundaram said: "The taste of pudding is in eating."
Saying that it was in hurry, the court said, "We may decide (challenge to March 4) in your favour. Of all what you know. We are in a hurry."
The court by its March 26 order had said that Sahara will have to deposit with the court's registry Rs. 10,000 crores as a condition to walk out of Tihar jail where he is currently incarcerated under judicial custody since March 4.
The court had said that Roy would deposit Rs.5,000 crore in cash and for the balance of Rs. 5,000 crore, he would furnish a bank guarantee from a nationalised bank.
The application will come up for hearing on April 9 when court would hear the petition by Roy challenging the March 4 order by the court sending him to judicial detention.
Sending Roy and other two directors - Ashok Roy Choudhary and Ravi Shankar Dubey of SHRECL and SHICL to judicial custody, the apex court by its March 4 order had said, that despite being given sufficient opportunities, there was no proposal to "honour" its judgment of Aug 31, 2012, and subsequent orders of Dec 5, 2012 and Feb 25, 2013, to return investors money.
The court by its March 4 order had said: "Preservation of market integrity is extremely important for economic growth of this country and for national interest."
"Maintaining investors' confidence requires market integrity and market abuse is a serious financial crime which undermines the very financial structure of this country and will make imbalance in wealth between haves and have nots," the court had said in its order.