No SC relief for Sahara chief Subrata Roy

RSTV Bureau

supreme_courtNo immediate relief for Sahara chief Subrata Roy as he will continue to remain in jail for not complying with the court’s order to return investors’ money, a sum worth Rs 24,000 crores.

On Friday, the Supreme Court asked the jailed businessman to furnish Rs 5000 crores in cash and the same amount as bank guarantee to be out on bail.

The apex court agreed to accept bank guarantee as a mode of repayment, a request made by Roy.

A bench of justices T S Thakur, AR Dave and AK Sikri while pronouncing the order said, “We have accepted the format of bank guarantees, subject to certain conditions.”

However, Roy’s advocate Kapil Sibal told the court that Roy would not be able to provide a bank guarantee of Rs 5000 crore as one of the financial institutions had backed out.

The court also asked Roy to pay the market regulator Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI) a sum of Rs 36,000 crore within 18 months from the date of his release. The sum has to be furnished in nine installments within 18 months, the court said.

While explaining the terms under which Roy could get bail, the court allowed SEBI to encash the bank guarantees in case Roy defaults in paying two of the instalments.

The court also made it clear that Roy would have to surrender and head back to jail in case three of the instalments default.

“We direct them (Roy and two other jailed directors) to deposit their passport with the court. They shall not leave the country without prior permission of this court,” the bench said.

When out on bail, Roy will also have to inform Tilak Marg police station in Delhi every fortnight about his movements within the country.

In a minor reprieve, Roy will be able to avail certain facilities like telephone and internet inside the jail for another eight weeks. The bench extended this provision on Friday.

Roy has been in Tihar jail since March 4, 2014.

On May 14, the court had ordered Roy to come up with a “scheme” within two weeks, giving details as to how the group intends to sell its assets and repay SEBI.

Since August 31, 2012 the Sahara group has been struggling to gather Rs 24,000, which the court ordered the group to refund its depositors along with an interest of 15 per cent.