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The marred truth behind Sahara

SEBI is trying to nab Sahara for nearly 3 years. This in itself a commentary on the smug belief of Subrata Roy, the promoter of the Sahara group, who finally got arrested this morning that the nemesis would never catch up with him. He must have strongly believed that his fierce sense of loyalty to his ‘investors’ would eventually bail him out.

In November 2010, SEBI restrained Sahara from raising funds through optionally fully convertible debentures (OFCDs). Allahbad High Court after a legal battle by Sahara Shri did not entertain him and ordered him to return the money which he raised through these so called debentures.

He then went to the Supreme Court but in August 2012, the SC ordered Sahara to refund Rs. 24,000 crores to the investors. Roy did not respond to SEBI’s plea in Supreme Court for detention of Roy and other two directors. The Supreme Court issued a non-bailable warrant against Roy for failing to appear before it in person as directed at the court’s last hearing. And finally, he surrendered on 28th February 2014.

One does not know what pains SEBI took to find out whether the investors in OFCDs were ghosts or real persons with credible documents to prove their identities. Presumably, bulk of them turned out to be ghosts. Sahara, obviously, couldn’t return the money to ghosts, could it? That is why it is squirming uncomfortably and coming out with gimmicks like sending truckloads of documents to the SEBI in its vain attempt to prove that much before the apex court cracked the whip, it had refunded upwards of Rs 20,000 crore in cash or kind. It seems Sahara was stuck in a big scam. Will it be Roy’s turn to bite the bullet like Ramalinga Raju of Satyam? Raju took the rap on himself and didn’t expose his alleged political patrons. Would Roy too stoically take the rap on himself and protect his investors?

Are these businessmen here to make business? Who are these so called ‘investors’- ghosts or corrupt politicians? Think about it!

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