SAT sets aside Rs 14L fine imposed by Sebi on IFCI

The Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) today set aside a Sebi order against IFCI Ltd wherein the markets regulator had imposed a fine of Rs 14 lakh on the term lender for violating disclosure norms.

In the Sebi order, it was alleged that IFCI had failed to make disclosures as required under SAST (Substantial Acquisition of Shares and Takeovers) Regulations and PIT (Prohibition of Insider Trading) Regulations, regarding its shareholding in Glodyne Technoserve.

In a ruling, SAT said the counsel for Sebi fairly stated that IFCI had raised a plea before the adjudicating officer (AO) that the shares acquired by invoking the pledge were sold from time to time, as a result, the shareholding of the term lender did not exceed the limits prescribed under the SAST and PIT Regulations.

However, that plea has been "inadvertently" not considered in the Sebi order, it added.

"Since the basic plea raised by the appellant (IFCI) has not been considered in the impugned order, we quash and set aside the impugned order and restore the matter to the file of the AO of Sebi for fresh decision on merit in accordance with law," SAT said.

The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) had conducted an investigation in share trading of Glodyne Technoserve Ltd (GTL) during the period from January, 2012 to April, 2013.

As per the order, IFCI had provided loan to Glodyne Ventures and Holdings for which the shares of GTL held by its promoter Divvyani Sarnaaik were pledged with the term lender.

IFCI had an aggregate of 5 per cent or more of the share capital of GTL in the form of the pledged shares, which were subsequently invoked by it.

Following the invocation of pledge, there was an increase in IFCI's shareholding in GTL with regard to which the term lender was required to make disclosures, which it had allegedly not made.

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