New Revised Statement of Advocate Gautam Awasthi on 28th November 2014

The Saharas had filed applications seeking permission of the Hon’ble Supreme Court for taking over of the loan of Bank of China relating to three foreign properties. The Saharas will also be raising a loan of US$650 million on the foreign properties for being utilized for the payment in SEBI-Sahara Refund Account in compliance of the order dated 26.3.2014.

The court, on the insistence of SEBI, has asked Saharas to show the ESCROW agreement with respect to the junior loan of US$650 million and once SEBI gives a no objection and the money is transferred in the ESCROW account, the Hon’ble Court will permit the taking over of the loan from Bank of China and raising of the junior loan.

The Hon’ble Supreme Court was also shown the agreements of sale with respect to domestic properties. The SEBI, however, has sought time to submit its response regarding the proposed sale of domestic properties at Chomma, Jodhpur, Vasai and Pune.

The Saharas have demonstrated that in addition to Rs 3,117 crore already deposited, the balance amount for compliance of the order dated 26.3.2014 have been arranged and once necessary permissions are granted by the court, the money will reach SEBI in a phased manner. The Hon’ble Supreme Court has now listed the matter for Tuesday, 2nd December 2014.

Gautam Awasthi


Suresh Raina Joins ‘U P Wizards’ - the Hero Hockey India League’s Lucknow Franchise

Lucknow, 17 November 2014: Mr. Suresh Raina, the ace cricketer, today joined the Hockey India League (HIL) franchise team - Uttar Pradesh Wizards as its co-owner. The announcement of his association was made by Mr. Abhijit Sarkar of Uttar Pradesh Wizards in an event held at Sahara Shaher, Lucknow in the presence of Mr. Suresh Raina. Born in Ghaziabad, Mr. Raina has represented Uttar Pradesh at all levels in cricket.

Speaking on the announcement of the association with Uttar Pradesh Wizards,
Mr. Suresh Raina said, “It is a memorable day for me because today I am immensely proud to be associated with the national sport of our country, hockey, by joining UP Wizards. On this occasion, I would also like to take the opportunity of congratulating the Indian hockey team for bringing laurels to our nation by winning gold in the Asian games after a span of sixteen years and qualifying directly to the Olympics. Uttar Pradesh is a land of world class hockey gems like Major Dhyan Chand, K.D. Singh Babu and many more to follow and since my sports college days in Lucknow, I have a lot of friends who are hockey players and this further boosts up my pleasure of my association with hockey. I will make all possible endeavours and bring all sorts of support required for uplifting the game of hockey in the region.”

Speaking on the occasion, Mr. Abhijit Sarkar of Uttar Pradesh Wizards said, “Hockey is our national game and we are proud owner of UP Wizards. We are sure that association of Mr. Suresh Raina will make hockey more popular in the state and will attract more fan following for this sport. We will achieve greater laurels and success in the sport of hockey in the coming years and we are committed to the development of sports at all levels in the country.”

Speaking on the announcement, Ms. Elena Norman, CEO, Hockey India League said “Hockey India League welcomes Suresh Raina as the co-owner of Uttar Pradesh Wizards. It’s an honor to see cricket legends coming forward to support world’s only Hockey League and we are confident that the 3rd edition of Hero Hockey India League will take the excitement and expectations a notch higher, not only through the high adrenaline games but even the kind of association that it is garnering.”

Recently, the captain of Indian Cricket Team, Mr. Mahendra Singh Dhoni has also got associated with the Ranchi franchise team of Hockey India League as its co-owner. Hockey India League is world’s most prominent hockey league and is providing a world class platform to young Indian sporting talents of this great game by giving them an opportunity to nurture their skills under the supervision of talented and veteran sportsmen.

RBI, SEBI and ROC come under CBI scanner in Saradha chit-fund scam

Kolkata: Investigation into the multi-crore Saradha chit-fund scam is likely to tighten the noose around senior officials of Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and SEBI. Reports suggest that CBI will soon examine some RBI, SEBI and ROC officials in connection with the Saradha ponzi scam.
"The examination will be aimed at understanding the circumstances and seeking clarification about documents," an official said.
A report in
 The Indian Express says that the investigating agency has mentioned the role of senior officials of SEBI, ROC, and RBI in the scam.
It is pertinent to point out that CBI has already examined two executive directors and one ex-executive director of SEBI during its probe into the scam.
The agency has already filed a 25-page charge sheet along with annexures containing the names of three accused - Sudipta Sen, Debjani Mukherjee and Kunal Ghosh, the last being a suspended TMC Rajya Sabha MP who had worked with Sen, the Saradha founder.

MS Dhoni is the new Franchisee owners for Ranchi team of Hero Hockey India League alongwith Sahara India Pariwar

Names the team ‘Ranchi Rays’

Ranchi, 25 October 2014: Hockey India League today announced Captain of India Cricket Team, MS Dhoni in support of Sahara India Pariwar as the new franchisee owners for the Ranchi team. Coining the team Ranchi Rays, MS Dhoni was himself present for the announcement conference held in Ranchi today alongwith Mr. Abhijit Sarkar, Head-Corporate Communications, Sahara India Pariwar & Director - Sahara Adventures Sports Ltd and Dr. Narinder Batra, Chairman, Hockey India League.

Speaking on the announcement Hero Hockey India League Chairman Dr. Narinder Batra said, “This is a great moment for Hockey India League to have MS Dhoni on board as a franchisee owner of the world’s most prominent hockey league alongwith Sahara India Pariwar. This initiative by Sahara India Pariwar showcases the faith that they have in Hero Hockey India League and I am happy by the kind of support that the League is garnering from all quarters. This development also shows the advancement of the HHIL where reputed corporate and sports promoters are coming together to take Indian hockey at a new level altogether.”

Speaking on owning the Ranchi Franchise of HHIL, MS Dhoni said, “Today I am very happy to own the franchisee of Ranchi Team in the Hockey India League. I was always interested to do something for this region and I want to see also that hockey should be uplifted from the grassroot level. I have got this franchisee with the support of Sahara India Pariwar, one of the prime promoter and patron of sports in India.”

Speaking on co-owning Ranchi Rays, Mr Abhijit Sarkar, Head-Corporate Communications, Sahara India Pariwar & Director-Sahara Adventures Sports Ltd said, “Hockey is our national game and we are proud to be associated with Ranchi franchisee and are elated to continue our patronage and support for the game. We will achieve greater laurels and success in the sport of hockey in the coming years and Sahara India Pariwar is committed to the development of sport at all levels.”

Also, Mr. Arun Pandey, CMD, Rhiti Sports added, “MS Dhoni has supported every sport and hockey is another sport which is close to Mahi’s heart. When this opportunity came, Mahi quickly accepted it as he always wants to do something for his state and country. This is an indeed way to uplift hockey in his state which is our national game. We have long term plans to uplift hockey at grassroot level.”

Subsequent to his association with ISL, MS Dhoni continues his support towards other sports beyond being the captain of the Indian Cricket team and Sahara India Pariwar who already own the Lucknow team in the League will now co-own the Ranchi team from this edition of the Hockey India League.

Sebi fails to find investors, Sahara case gets complicated

NEW DELHI: With Sebi failing to find the investors of two Sahara funds — Sahara India Real Estate Corp (SIRECL) and Sahara Housing Investment Corp (SHICL) — the strange case against Sahara chief Subrata Roy and two Sahara directors has turned stranger. Sebi's case rests on its claim that Sahara has not refunded Rs 20,000 crore of investor money. And yet, despite advertisements in papers and other strenuous efforts, the market regulator has not been able to find investors of more than Rs 10 crore. 

This can mean only one of two things — either bulk of the Sahara investors are fictitious entities or the claim of Sahara that it has already repaid 90% of investors of these two funds is true. If the Sahara investors are fictitious, Sebi doesn't really have a role as it is mandated to deal with real investors, and some other agency should look into the case. And if Sahara's claim of having repaid its investors is true, Subrata Roy and the two directors shouldn't be in jail. 

From the very start, Sahara has maintained that most of its investors are relatively poor people from the rural hinterland — people who have been excluded by the banking system so far, and who can be detected only with the help of Sahara agents. Consequently, it has offered Sebi the help of its network of agents to reach Sahara investors. It says that only by reaching these investors, it can be determined whether these investors have been paid back their money. 

Sebi has so far not been impressed by Sahara's offer and tried to find the alleged investors on its own. Nor has the court felt that the modus offered by Sahara was necessary to determine whether these investors are real or not, and if real, whether they have been paid back their money. Now that Sebi's advertisements have failed, the court might have no option but to try out what Sahara has been suggesting. 

Otherwise, the logjam over Roy's imprisonment — now for seven months — is unlikely to clear. While like all businessmen, he's averse to any distress sale of his assets to raise Rs 10,000 crore — the bail pre-condition imposed by the Supreme Court — the case against him would appear to be rather doubtful if there's no investor to whom this large amount is to be returned. 

Some in the legal fraternity have questioned the legality of Roy's continued detention. Now politicians like Manohar Parrikar are also expressing their disquiet. A resolution to the impasse is desirable not just because Roy is in jail, but also because Sahara is the employer of around a lakh people. His continued imprisonment could cripple the company and jeopardize these jobs. 

4,600 Sahara investors claim refund from Sebi

NEW DELHI: Around 4,600 investors in two Sahara group companies have come forward to claim refunds from the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi), which had asked those who had purchased bonds issued by the entities to claim their money. Sources familiar with the development told TOI that the average claim is to the tune of Rs 20,000, resulting in a total demand of under Rs 10 crore.

The low demand will bolster Sahara's argument before courts that it had repaid most of the investors who had come forward to claim the investment they had made in bonds issued by two group companies — Sahara India Real Estate Corp (SIRECL) and Sahara Housing Investment Corp (SHICL).

In August, 
Sebi had asked investors to submit refund applications with documentary proof by September 30. The regulator has begun the process of issuing refunds, the sources said.

Sebi and Sahara have been involved in a bitter battle over the past few years, related to alleged irregular fund-raising to the tune of Rs 24,000 crore from three crore investors.

Sahara has maintained that it has cleared over 90% of the outstanding amount and paid directly to the bondholders, and the remaining amount added up to around Rs 2,500 crore. Following SC orders, it had deposited Rs 5,120 crore to Sebi in December 2012, while another Rs 3,100 crore was deposited this June.

Sahara chief Subrata Roy has been in Tihar Jail for the past six months after the company failed to raise the Rs 10,000 crore required to secure the bail, which the court is insisting on to repay investors.

The company has tried to sell and mortgage its iconic hotel properties in the US and UK but the efforts are yet to bear fruit. Roy was given permission to use a temporary facility in the jail premises to pursue sale of the hotels but has now been ordered to return to barracks.

Sebi had earlier sought to get the list of investors but made little headway as a truckload of documents reached its Mumbai office. It had also tried to contact investors directly earlier as well but got few responses.

Legal debate over Subrata Roy's detention gathers pace

NEW DELHI: It's been over six months that Subrata Roy, the flamboyant chief of Sahara, has been in Delhi's Tihar jail. In the meantime, the hopes of his release have risen and ebbed. And as the days go by, it is becoming uncertain when he will be able to furnish Rs 10,000 crore to Sebi — a pre-condition set by the Supreme Court for his release. 

Company sources say that it's not that the company doesn't have the money. The issue is Roy's current predicament. "The entire world knows that he's being forced to make distress sales to raise this amount and so he is getting badly discounted offers for his valuable overseas properties. Now, which businessman wants to sell his jewels at throwaway prices," said a company executive. 

Roy's case — and along with him that of two other Sahara directors, Ashok Roy Choudhury and R S Dubey — has few parallels. Technically, Rs 10,000 crore is not a bail amount; bail was granted to him five months ago, but it came with the pre-condition of him paying Rs 10,000 crore for his release. Legal experts say this is an extraordinary pre-condition. 

There is also lack of clarity about the charges that have been slapped against Roy and the two Sahara directors. If it is contempt of court — Roy refused to appear before the Supreme Court on the given date citing his mother's illness — he has already served the maximum punishment of six months prescribed for the offence. 

"The question to be debated is whether there is a reasonable limit for how long someone can be incarcerated under the present circumstances — or if the six-month limit prescribed under the Contempt of Courts Act applies here," said Gopal Sankaranarayanan, senior advocate, Supreme Court. 

Article 21 of the Constitution deals with an individual's personal liberty. It states, "No person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to procedure established by law." 

Some feel that this Article is being violated. Abhishek Manu Singhvi said, "Although currently I am not arguing the case, in my professional opinion, the continued incarceration may well be held to be a violation of his right to life under Article 21 (of Constitution of India) and a fit ground for a curative petition." 

These legal points aside, it is now clear that Roy — about whom company executives say was not an original respondent in this case — will have to pay the amount as ordered by the Supreme Court. The question is whether he should be kept in prison until he coughs up with Rs 10,000 crore, or should he be released with due safeguards, allowed to negotiate the best terms for sale of assets, and told to pay the amount within a set deadline. 

Roy has been in Tihar jail, under judicial custody, since March 4 this year. In early August, Roy was given a 10 working days to negotiate sale or lease of Sahara group's hotel properties to raise the Rs 10,000-crore bail amount. According to people within the group, he has been making 'relentless efforts to sell the properties' in order to meet the criterion set forth by the apex court, 'which shows his bonafide intention to comply with the orders passed by the court'. 

Ambay Valley becomes India’s first City to get ‘ISO 50001:2011 Energy Management System Certifications’

Mumbai, 26th September, 2014: Ambay Valley, the first planned Hill City of Independent India which always believed in achieving new heights and setting new trends, has now become India’s first city to receive ‘ISO 50001:2011 Energy Management System Certifications’.  The ISO certification has been awarded to Ambay Valley for its energy management systems and its endeavors of environment conservation especially at the time when the country is striving to achieve round the clock power supply for everyone. The certification is a testimony of Ambay Valley’s robust energy management system (EnMS) to use energy more efficiently.
The luxurious Ambay Valley City spread over ten thousand acres is being developed as an integrated Hill City by Sahara India Pariwar. This unique and self-contained City is surrounded by the picturesque Sahayadri range and offers a superior lifestyle along with essential infrastructures such as a hospital, school, airport and shopping facilities. The City comprises of high-end villas, condominiums, a 18 hole championship golf course which was recently awarded ‘Best International Golf Course’, a town plaza, a community centre and the world’s tallest multimedia fountain show. The City has a dedicated airport.  Under the hood, Ambay Valley City is powered by a dedicated power plant that guarantees 24 hours of power supply, a well planned professional security system, IT & Communication network, a well-designed and modern water treatment and solid waste & sewerage treatment systems & networks and a state of the art water treatment plant. These utilities combined ensure a smooth and uninterrupted 24/7 operation. 
Before awarding the prestigious ISO 50001:2011 Energy Management System certification to Ambay Valley City Ltd., auditing firm M/S RINA carried out various audit to examine the energy management systems adopted by the Ambay Valley City for its operations. In an event held at Sahara Star Mumbai ISO 50001:2001 Certificate awarded to Mr. Vivek Kumar - CEO Ambay Valley City & Hotel Sahara Star by Mr. Thomas Alocious Fernandez, Country Head of auditing firm M/s RINA.  
Speaking on the Occasion Mr. Vivek Kumar - CEO Ambay Valley City & Hotel Sahara Star said, ““It is a matter of great pride for us to become India’s first city to receive ISO 50001:2011 certification for energy use and environment conservation. We at Ambay Valley City continuously strive to integrate energy management to improve quality that in turn helps us in environmental management. We always believe in achieving new heights and setting new trends this is yet another major milestone achieved by Ambay Valley City and showcase of our commitment to make Ambay Valley City as life’s finest abode, especially when we are already the proud recipient of two International Certifications • ISO 14001:2004 Environmental Management System • OHSAS 18001:2007 Occupational Health & Safety Systems.”
As committed to the energy policy to optimize the use of Renewable Energy Sources, at Ambay Valley City the reduction in the Electricity Consumption in the last four months is approx. 2200 MWh (22 Lac Units). This accounts for a reduction in approx. 1900 tons of Carbon Dioxide per annum. Implementation of the ISO 50001:2011 EnMS system is a very helpful in reduction of the Green House Gas (GHG) emission and will also make positive contributions towards reducing depletion of energy resources and mitigating worldwide effects of energy use, such as global warming.
About Ambay Valley City
Spread over ten thousand acres, the luxurious Ambay Valley City is being developed as an integrated Hill City by Sahara India Pariwar. This unique and self-contained City is surrounded by the picturesque Sahayadri range and offers spectacular views of vast environs and breath-taking landscape. The City successfully blends a superior lifestyle along with essential infrastructures such as a hospital, school, airport and shopping facilities. The City comprises of high-end villas, condominiums, a 18 hole championship golf course which was recently awarded ‘Best International Golf Course’ at the International Property Awards in London, a town plaza, a community centre and the world’s tallest multimedia fountain show. Apart from being a destination for unsurpassed grandeur and luxurious lifestyle, Ambay Valley City also has an equally impressive business district with an infrastructure that allows businesses to land their private airplanes into the City’s dedicated airport and head straight to the conference rooms. The business infrastructure and facilities have been designed in accordance to the international standards. Moreover, Ambay Valley City is also home to India’s largest auditorium.  Under the hood, Ambay Valley City is powered by a dedicated power plant that guarantees 24 hours of power supply, a well planned professional security system, IT & Communication network, a well-designed and modern water treatment and solid waste & sewerage treatment systems & networks and a state of the art water treatment plant. These utilities combined ensure a smooth and uninterrupted 24/7 operation.  The city is located at a distance of 120 km from Mumbai, 90 km from Pune and lies 25 km off the town of Lonavala on the Mumbai Pune Expressway. The luxurious quality and style of Ambay Valley life have redefined City living. This paradigm shift in lifestyle has been very well accepted and has also become the new benchmark in luxurious living. We are fully committed in making Ambay Valley to be one of the top five destinations of the world.

Sahara’s Plaza property world’s 2nd most popular hotel for uber-rich: Survey

New Delhi: The Sahara group's iconic hotel The Plaza, New York, figures among the top 10 hotels in the world for multi-millionaire visitors in 2014, a survey said.
The Plaza is the second most preferred hotel for the uber-rich people globally, said the survey by New World Wealth. It was based on a sample of 450 multi-millionaires.
The Plaza, which is jointly owned by Sahara Group and Kingdom Holdings, a Saudi Arabia-based corporation, had 3,700 multi-millionaires in the 12 months to June 2014, second only to The Bellagio in Las Vegas, which received as many as 6,400 multi millionaires.
"The Plaza's high place on the list is impressive considering it only has 280 rooms which puts it at a disadvantage to larger hotels which can accommodate more guests in a year," the report said.
According to the report, titled 'Most Popular Hotels for Millionaires', The Raj Palace, Jaipur, had 300 or more multi-millionaire visitors in the 12 months to June.
The Raj Palace, Jaipur is the only one hotel from India has made it to the list of select few boutique hotels that witnessed 300 or more multi-millionaires visitors.
Other most preferred hotel destinations for multi -millionaires include Caesars Palace, Las Vegas (3,400 visitors); Waldorf Astoria, New York (3,300); Marina Bay Sands Singapore (3,100) and The Breakers, Palm Beach (3,000) among others.
Las Vegas hotels dominate the list. "This reflects Vegas's appeal as a short stay holiday destination for the super-rich," the report said.
The other boutique hotels which were mentioned by several multi-millionaires in the survey include -- Baur au Lac, Zurich; Chateau Marmont, Los Angeles; Goldeneye, Jamaica; Hôtel du Cap-Eden-Roc, Antibes; Little Nel, Aspen and Raffles, Singapore.

For the purposes of this study, an individual with net assets of at least $10 million is considered multi-millionaire. There are around 495,000 multi-millionaires worldwide (as on June 2014).

Sahara's The Plaza 2nd most popular hotel for the uber-rich

Sahara group-owned, The Plaza in New York city is the second most preferred hotel for the uber-rich people globally, said the survey by New World Wealth.

The Sahara group's iconic hotel The Plaza, New York, figures among the top 10 hotels in the world for multi-millionaire visitors in 2014, a survey said. The Plaza is the second most preferred hotel for the uber-rich people globally, said the survey by New World Wealth. It was based on a sample of 450 multi-millionaires. The Plaza, which is jointly owned by Sahara Group and Kingdom Holdings, a Saudi Arabia-based corporation, had 3,700 multi-millionaires in the 12 months to June 2014.

Blessings for Saharshri on His Birthday as He Battles Legal Woes

A human-being is very dominating. He is born with the different traits. So a high density of population creates all kinds of confusions, people lose their peace of mind because everybody desires a good existence. There are very few companies in India that have revolutionized & developed India like Sahara India Pariwar. Shri Subrata Roy Sahara is a visionary in the true sense of the word – with a vision that transcends all boundaries and defies all conventional business norms. For a man who has created a mega corporate empire, his fundamentals are totally different from standard managerial practices and norms. Sahara can be defined as a business house with No Owner & No Trade Union and strictly No – Discrimination Policy – “You don’t need ‘Netas’ in a family, you need guardians”. When approached for a trade union, this was the answer that was politely given by one of the Kartavyayogi Karyakartas. It is this spirit that moves every Kartavyayogi at Sahara India Pariwar.

On the event of Saharasri's bday, I would like to wish the loyal son of Indian soil, a very happy bday. I would pray for the gods to bless him with true and quick justice, Good health & long life. I believe as a Sahara follower that he will come clean and unscathed in his tryst with political corruption & competitors led gimmick. God bless you Mr. Subrata Roy Sahara. 

Sahara SEBI Issue – Statement from Keshav Mohan, Advocate

We are disappointed with the judgment that has been delivered by the Hon’ble Supreme Court earlier today.
We are still in the process of reading and understanding the judgment. The voluminous evidence that we have already submitted to substantiate our stance may have possibly been misunderstood.
We maintain that we have already refunded to 93% of our investors. Most of the payments made were in cash, as per the RBI norms and in accordance with SEBI and SAT orders. In addition to ledger entries, we had also submitted original vouchers, receipts and other concerned documents in original being physical proof of the payments and are with SEBI pending verification.
We expect to return to the Hon’ble Court in the near future with further evidence of our compliance of the Hon’ble Court’s previous orders, and to satisfy the Hon’ble Court of our earnest intentions moving forward.
The Hon’ble Court has indicated that it expects us to make a new proposal. Since the beginning, we have been trying hard to present the best practical proposal. We have always maintained that this will be actually a double payment which we are asked to make hence a serious relook into the business and financial status is required each time. In light of today’s direction, we will try our best to derive a fresh proposal to the best of our capacity and hoping to satisfy the Hon’ble Court. For this, we would also apply to the Hon’ble Court that our properties and bank accounts be defreezed so that we are in a position to come up to the expectations of the Hon’ble Supreme Court.
We take this opportunity to reiterate our deep and abiding respect for the Hon’ble Supreme Court of India and our commitment to follow the order in letter and spirit.
Keshav Mohan


Oh dear! Excuse the typo error. I meant the Lions of Punjab since I am personally & always immensely impressed with men of courage, wisdom and vision. Somehow my title went into sounding into an innuendo.  I will choose the liberty of thinking that perhaps those with a sense of humour would enjoy this inconsequential comedy of errors!

Infact, I do think that I posses a rather healthy and liberal sense of humour. What is life without a hearty laugh and comical twists of absurd yet funny incidents? Pick up the newspaper and it will tickle your mind with some of the most bizarre & fantastical stories you will ever hear or read. I must say our new breed of journalists have learnt to grow a funny bone and have taught us the same. Interestingly our new age news makers don’t fail to amuse and entertain either.

Recently, I read an article about Kunal Deshmukh’s aspirational directorial piece which he is calling Raja Natwarlal, so sadly, based on his ill-informed references of a major business tycoon, Mr.Subrata Roy Sahara, who is currently in a legal turmoil with the SEBI. For those who haven’t heard of Kunal Deshmukh I am not surprised. He is a dot in the massive Entertainment industry with his directorial ventures mostly revolving around Love, Sex and Drama. What is really baffling and worth mentioning is the ignorance that Deshmukh displays. I mean come on! A new age, educated 32 year old, metro-sexual man with such a horrible grasp on current affairs?

Where on earth did he learn that Subrata Roy’s business dealt with chit funds? Who on earth told him that he is in a legal turmoil because of some non-existent property scam?  Mr.Deshmukh when you plan to enlighten us with your vision (I’d love to call them nightmares) and creative non-genius, atleast get your facts correct! So much for a spin with so few, rather, zero hard facts! Your statement only projects a pathetic attempt to exhibition your inspiration as “more 'shocking' and 'in-depth' than your last one” & your dumbness is both laughable and pitiable.

And there goes my hunger for a good laugh, fed. LOLs, ROTL..!!! Feed people only trivia and entertainment, you will wither their appetite & feed them nonsense, you will surely food poison them! I wouldn’t get into the elaborate details of what the SAHARA SEBI issue is about but in a gist it’s been revolving around SEBI’s conceited claim over investor protection arguing that Sahara’s business practices are unhealthy and harm the depositors. Sahara is an enormously diversified Indian conglomerate employing around 12 lacs employees with business interests in Motion Pictures, Hospitality, Para-banking (Mr.Deshmukh! you must, especially, Google Parabanking before you ignorantly ramble some mumbo jumbo about the subject and embarrass yourself further..!!!!), Retail, etc. Sahara has never been in the business of Chit funds and most certainly never in Lotteries either.

When someone like a Kunal Deshmukh makes such juvenile, foolish, ill informed statements, it’s scary!!! He comes from bracket of an industry that moulds impressions. So the least you expect from him is sound and good research on his subject of inspiration. Just making appearances match, doesn’t do the job. And if you are ill- informed on the subject then admit so. Saves you the embarrassment! Has he ever interviewed Mr.Subrata Roy? Has he reached out to his family for his research or spoken with his employees, ever? Has he ever made any intelligent enquiry about his businesses, as a part of his study?

assuming the answer is, No! What is even more amusing is what the journalist, Ms. Priya Gupta, finds interesting about the similarities. Being a journalist, I thought she knew the undertones of the Sahara SEBI issue and would have utilised the opportunity to dispel some myths about the matter.  She could have very easily burst Mr.Deshmukh’s bubble and conducted some responsible reporting.

G.K. Chesterton once said, “Journalism largely consists in saying "Lord Jones is dead" to people who never knew Lord Jones was alive.” Ms.Gupta, i thought you had more substance in you than taking a jab at a man who is much more seasoned than you are, experienced more life than you ever will, struggled his way up to accomplishments and fathers an army of loyal, hard working & honest workforce. Lead these many men; first, in your lifetime tell and then us what you found interesting about that. Likewise for you Mr.Deshmukh! Your Goliath emerges to lack any soul or intensity. Your statements in Media are imbecile and your knowledge of the subject is appalling. You sure you haven’t mixed David for Goliath? Or perhaps in your fit of ignorance you’ve drawn an incorrect analogy. You should probably draw the parallel with IGNORAMUS & STUPIDUS!! I already feel bad for myself for having apologised for my accidental innuendo, in the beginning. Mr.Deshmukh hasn’t even offered his! I knew he was ignorant and ill read, what I didn’t know was that he lacked mannerisms, too.

My commiserations to your nightmare “Raja Natwarlal”, Sir and my LOLs and ROTLs too!!! Also, please accept my loaded statements with puns and jabs at your intelligence, with no prospect of an apology!

Column: Why is Sebi finding it difficult to track Sahara investors?

Arun Kejriwal
The imbroglio involving the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) and Subrata Roy-led Sahara Group is not a simple case of money being taken and not returned to investors; neither is it a shady deal like the Saradha scam.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had overseen the refund of over Rs 22,000 crore to about 40 million Sahara investors by a handpicked committee a few years ago. Neither the committee faced the problem of identifying investors nor it doubted their existence.
Certainly, the apex bank has greater knowledge of investors, and a refund of this amount of money to such a large base of investors was a mammoth task. When RBI could do it, why is Sebi finding issues with the same set of investors as claimed by Sahara.
One must understand that the turf over which Sahara operates is with people who are unbankable. Returns offered by Sahara are in sync with the prevailing market rates and are not, therefore, unsustainable or in any way leading to instability.
The Sahara scheme is not a pyramid scheme and does not offer returns which can only be shown on paper. The rates vary in the range of 8-10 per cent, which is the current bank rate in the country.
Sebi in its wisdom says that since majority of the 20,000-odd people to whom it sent mails about their deposits did not respond, they are bogus or non-existent. The kind of questionnaire sent by the market regulator is beyond the realm of a well-read person and needs a high degree of expertise to be filled in and returned.
Secondly, when a person is asked to contact the Sebi headquarters in Mumbai for a refund of Rs 8,000, he/she feels it is not worth it. Thirdly, if the investor has already been refunded by Sahara, why should he claim a bogus or double refund? The most interesting aspect of the episode is that the same 20,000-odd investors from whom Sebi did not receive reply, Sahara got KYC and refund discharge vouchers in the standard prescribed and accepted form from over 16,000 people.
RBI refunded about Rs 22,000 crore is not acceptable to Sebi. The regulator is not willing to work with Sahara.
Sebi is not able to locate investors and yet it wants more money. Why and for what is something that Sebi needs to answer? In the Saradha case, which rocked West Bengal last year, thousands of investors came out to protest and there were a few cases of suicides as well.
Why do not we see similar protests in the Sahara case if there are millions of unpaid investors as claimed by Sebi? I believe in the current situation it makes sense for Sebi to seek help of bodies concerned in reaching out to the investors and seeing that the money due is refunded at the earliest.
The Supreme Court has also said that if Sahara's help is taken in doing so, there is no reason why the investors cannot be found and their rightful money be repaid. Like I said in the beginning, the case of Sebi versus Sahara is not one of investor protection but something which goes beyond that.


Let’s Imagine! Imagine Charlie Chaplin not being the legendary comedian that he was. Or Arnold Swarzeneger not the action icon we all know him as. Imagine Sachin Tendulkar not being the celebrated cricketer but a regular 9 to 5 school teacher or if electricity was never invented. What would it be like if Newton had never discovered the Law of Gravity or Einstein had not made those elaborate inventions?  What if Elvis continued driving trucks or Satyajit Ray wasn’t an illustrious story teller? Difficult and rather unfamiliar and absurd hypothesis! Would these people be still famous, brilliant and celebrated if they were not in their chosen professions? What would have our lives been like in the absence of these people or their world changing contributions to humanity? The answer can only be left to one’s imagination and with no certainty can anyone claim that they be who they are today or what would our existence been like, if these men were not true to their calling.

Now for a moment, let’s imagine a bit further. Would Sahara India have avoided the existential crisis, they are in today, had they not chosen to provide a sound, secure & lawful financial structure to a stratum of the society who has always stood ignored amongst the tall claims of social and economic development? What would the lives and future of these millions of depositors would have been like if they didn’t have a secure medium to invest and save and flourish? What would the future of the children growing in these millions of households have hold? Would they be educated? Would there be employment for the unemployed or the less skilled or the poor? Would there have been economic empowerment for the have nots who do not have the means or the sanction to even hold a bank account or a legitimate Id? Would the chief of Sahara India, Subrata Roy, have saved himself the witch hunt by a National Regulator or avoided jail had he chosen to create a lush empire and focused on serving himself rather than serving the people? Such a swarm of hypotheticals starting with just one simple question, “Imagine?”

Sadly, there are no simple answers. Only simple questions. The answers are complex, unfathomable and lead down to a road of nefarious possible motives, juxtapositions & outcomes. SEBI’s motives juxtaposed with the Court’s senseless brickbat blows on the Sahara Chief only adds insult to the common man’s understanding of productive regulation and fair justice. Even more dangerously, the imagination of SEBI and the Courts have taken a turn for the worse and seem to be more heavily invested in feeding their own egos, their illogic and mindless banter rather than using that imagination to serve and secure.

Currently, SEBI has been claiming that investor accounts provided by Sahara are fictitious and the regulator’s independent verification has failed to make any headway. SEBI so far has been able to repay less than 1 crore rupees to OFCD investors even though  its been 18 months since Sahara deposited 5,120 crore rupees with the market watchdog. Interestingly, in 2008, Sahara had paid back around 4 crore depositors under strict supervision of Reserve Bank of India. The central bank, then, did not stumble upon any such fictitious account and the OFCD issue had almost same set of investors. So is SEBI imagining these investors as fictitious or is it disguising its incompetence. To further add to the comedy of errors, the Supreme Court has expressed its displeasure over SEBI’s tardy pace in verifying these investor accounts in Sahara’s OFCD issue. I can only imagine the embarrassment the courts must be facing at the hands of the regulator’s malfunction. And who is paying the price for all this mockery. The innocent, the lawful and the poor!

Let’s tax our imagination one more time and explore another set premise. What if Sahara is innocent? What if the Sahara supremo is being wrongfully accused and punished? Is SEBI acting in the best interest of the depositors or is it blinded by its punitive sense of dominion? What would it be like if SEBI realized and acknowledged that these investors in question are for real? What would it be like if there was no Sahara to begin with? Are these questions that have real and heavy implications or are they just plain rhetoric?

The answers can only be left to unfold as time and events pass by. The outcomes would be real and the consequences can either set unhealthy & dire precedents or can pave way to a truthful, mindful and fair premise. Just IMAGINE..!!!


As funny as it may appear but the Sahara Sebi issue strangely reminds me of
Shakespeare’s “Merchant of Venice”. For those who did not comprehend the
context, I’ll draw the parallel for you. SEBI disguised as the vindictive,
devious Shylock, drags Antonio (in this case Sahara) to reinforce his absurd
claim to Antonio’s 1 pound of flesh (interestingly the pound of flesh here
refers to the approximately 20,000 crores). As readers, we all knew that
Shylock was nothing short of killing Antonio in the court of law. A
befitting analogy to the Sahara Sebi dispute.

As preposterous as the title may sound, the witch hunt against the Sahara
supremo, Subrata Roy Sahara, is inches away of being an ill intentioned
corporate honour killing in progress by the highest authorities perched in
position of power and clout in India. A vicious attempt to execute an entire
corporate just to see it go on its knees bleeding, only to entertain the
prejudicial whims of a few.

Before this takes any form of further elaboration, an immediate look at the
economic quicksand we as an economy are in may add some perspective to what
you all will feed your minds with further down this piece. On one hand,
unemployment, fiscal deficits, an all time low in entrepreneurship and
inflation are some of the fiends we hope to fight off in the ongoing
elections. The gap between the haves and the have nots only deepens. On the
other hand, we have a senseless, irrational litigation running in the courts
against Sahara at the behest of SEBI, which until now has served absolutely
no purpose, lacks any grain of logic or fiscal sensibility and appears to be
making a mockery of our judicial system.

The Supreme Court epitomizes the judicial soul of the country.  An extremely
powerful entity that has the privilege and the clout of imparting judicial
discourse and lending sensibility in much senseless times we live in. What
does not make sense is when these minds of logic and intellect facilitate in
pronouncing judgement and infer, rather impose, guilt upon Sahara without
any grain of proof and assist an absurd claim of a regulator to a pound of
flesh that a) only reveals the regulator’s prejudicial & draconian approach
towards fiscal regulation in a free democratic country and b) severely
impairs the business sensibilities and economics of growth and development.

Subrata Roy, perhaps is the only corporate leader who comes from the region
of UP, Bihar, Rajasthan or MP. He can be attributed to have brought UP onto
the map of corporate leadership apart from its pre-existing electoral might
that UP is already known for. He has infact spawned employment for thousands
of people, catalyzed entrepreneurs, contributed massively to state revenues
and GDP and heavily fuelled CSR initiatives not just at a state but at a
national level too. He has gifted the poor with economic empowerment and
generated a fiscal device of investment and savings for these have nots.

SEBI’s claims about Sahara’s business practices hold no metal & more
dangerously are premised on an assumption. Having failed to verify the
thousands of documents and the veracity of the Sahara investors, SEBI has
assumed to put the blame of its malfunction on an assumption that these
investors are “fictitious”. This coming from the national regulator is an
extremely hazardous premise. How can a regulator be so negligent and
irrational in hurling such grave allegations when they themselves have not
fulfilled the obligations of due diligence that is pending at their end.
Having failed to do so, they have not only declared a war against a
corporate whose business, in the absence of any proof, stands absolutely
legitimate but have also cloaked their incompetency by pronouncing Sahara
guilty. Again, no proof of that too!

Assumptions are dangerous toys in the hands of a mindless child here. It is
the knife with which SEBI intends of extract its pound of flesh. For moment
here, let’s walk into the dangerous premise of that assumption and assume
that SEBI is granted its wish. It takes its pound of flesh of Sahara. Sahara
compromises and pays the disputed amount to SEBI. Now, having done that what
I would really like to know is how does SEBI plans to distribute this money
amongst the investors, who it in the first place, according to SEBI, were
fictitious? More so, if even we assume that by some work of miracle they do
locate these investors, shoves the money down their throats which, to begin
with, these depositors intended to keep invested, where do these depositors
take this money? This question is important because these investors are
daily rickshaw pullers, small roadside vendors and daily wage earners who
probably do not hold a 7 vault safe in their houses. If they have permanent
houses in the first place is also dubious. They are not account holders and
definitely lurking around the poverty line. Has SEBI worked on an alternate
investment plan for these investors if they wish to continue investing their
money? How does SEBI plans to ensure the financial health, whatever little
they may have? For future where do these small depositors go for their
savings because the only avenue they had as Sahara is already standing with
more than its pound of flesh missing and hemorrhaging to death?

A regulator and especially the courts cannot drop the burden of substantial
proof, moral & social obligations of their assessments and most certainly
cannot entertain prejudicial whims and eccentricities. Their roles have been
carved and evolved in a democratic society only to protect, serve and
nurture. Witch hunts and executions have no room where “Where words come out
from the depth of truth, Where tireless striving stretches its arms towards
perfection, Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way, Into the

dreary desert sand of dead habit...”. Sent on my BlackBerry® from Vodafone


The Supreme Court is set to hear Sahara chief Subrata Roy’s petition on Tuesday. Sahara has raised some points over its legal battle with stock market regulator Sebi

    Sahara says it has already paid 93% of the investors. Per investor average deposit is of 8,400. Hence, it can be repaid in cash as per law 
    In last 17 months, Sebi repaid only 1 cr and is holding 5619 cr (including interest), argues Sahara 
    No verification process has been started by Sebi in the last 17 months, disobeying court’s August 31, 2012 order, the company says 
    Sahara offered guarantee of the entire amount through bank trustee security; but when it was rejected, the company says it offered irrevocable bank guarantee. This has not been accepted 
    At the heart of the matter lies Sebi’s demand, under directions of the Supreme Court, of an additional 20,000 crore along with 15% interest to investors 
    The company says Sebi has alleged that Sahara’s investors are fictitious and untraceable 

    Sahara says that in 2008, it had repaid around 4 crore depositors under supervision of the Reserve Bank of India 
    The company says in response to Sebi’s assertion that many of the 20,000 letters to depositors didn’t elicit a response, Sahara had submitted affidavits and KYC documents confirming their existence 
    Sahara says it remains Sebi’s responsibility to ascertain the authenticity of its claim that it has repaid most of their money 

    If Sebi continues to insist that investors do not exist, then, by the same logic, the regulating body — born out of the specific mandate of protecting investors — also ceases to have any further stake or role to play in the case, the company said in a statement 
    Sahara says a proper verification process has not been implemented to ascertain the existence of its depositors — despite conclusive evidence forwarded to Sebi in the form of original documents, repayment vouchers and receipts 
    Sahara says as a market regulator, Sebi does not have the power to regulate unlisted entities. Sebi is looking to sell properties belonging to third parties which have been kept as security with Sebi, even when it has no authority to effect any such sale without the consent of the titleholders of the properties

Statement from Shri Smanto R Roy, Executive Director, Sahara India Pariwar

At a Press Conference on 28th February, 2014

Good Morning Everybody

On behalf of the Sahara India Pariwar, We welcome you all
We are meeting at a time when our organization has been very wrongly interpreted and presented in public against the backdrop of the ongoing Sahara – Sebi case.

As the matter is Sub-judice, we cannot bring forward many things pertaining to the case but being an organization like Sahara India Pariwar with a base of more than crores and crores of investors and having kartvyayogis in tune of 12 lakh, we feel it is our moral right and duty to come forward and dispel some misconceptions which are being created by parties having vested interest in the dust of ongoing dispute.

As you are aware of the happenings in this case and the developments of last two days, we wish to put forward the facts for the understanding of our esteemed investors / customers / kartavyayogi karyakartas, associates and business partners / our well wishers and public at large.

·        On 20th Feb’14, Hon’ble supreme court orders our Chairman Sri Subrata Roy Sahara (Saharasri Ji) and 3 other directors to appear in person in Hon’ble supreme court to be a part of the proceeding of that particular day related to the ongoing dispute of our two companies namely Sahara India Real Estate Corporation Ltd and Sahara India Housing & Investment Corporation Ltd with Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI).

·        On 22nd Feb’14, Saharasri Ji arrives in Delhi to have one on one meetings with our Senior Legal Counsels namely Shri Ram Jethmalani  & Shri Aryama Sundaram and thereafter to attend the proceedings in Hon’ble supreme court on 26th Feb’14 along with other three Directors

·        On 23rd Feb’14, Saharasri Ji meets both Senior Counsels Shri Ram Jethmalani and Shri Aryama Sundaram at their respective residences in New Delhi.

·        On 24th Feb’14, towards late evening Saharasri Ji is informed that the health condition of his mother Smt. Chabbi Roy, aged 92 years, who has been unwell for some time and is being attended and treated at Sahara Hospital in Lucknow, has suddenly deteriorated and her situation is critical.

·        Saharasri Ji being the eldest child of his mother and also being very attached to her decided to go back to Lucknow immediately with a private charter to be with his ailing mother at this critical moment as any son would have done in order to fulfill his emotional duties and obligations  towards his mother.

·        After arriving in Lucknow and understanding his mother’s fragile conditions Saharasri Ji decides to stay back in Lucknow to ensure proper support and care for his ailing mother.

·        Having taken this decision absolutely on Humanitarian and Emotional grounds he was also conscious of the directions given by Hon’ble Supreme Court. Therefore, he instructs the legal team to move an application to the Hon’ble Supreme Court immediately seeking an exemption from the hearing for that particular day. While the rest of three directors were to attend the proceedings, his inability to attend was also communicated in writing to our Senior Counsels personally by Saharasri Ji citing the reasons in detail.

·        Accordingly the very next day i.e. 25th Feb’14 our senior counsels Shri Ram Jethmalani and Shri Ganesh move a special application for seeking personal exemption along with a medical certificate issued by Padamshree Dr. Mansoor Hasan Head of Cardiology Department of the best Hospital in City of Lucknow run  by Sahara India Pariwar, which clearly states the fragile and deteriorating condition of Saharasri Ji’s Mother.

·        Accordingly the same matter was mentioned in front of the special bench, however the Hon’ble Justices did not grant us the short relief citing the reason as their inability to modify the order dated 20th Feb’14, subsequently Hon’ble Justices asked our counsel to take up the matter on the date of hearing that is 26th Feb,’14.

·        It is pertinent to mention that the condition of Saharasri Ji’s Mother continued to remain fragile and he decided to stay back in Lucknow at the side of his mother during this extremely critical phase hoping that Hon’ble Supreme Court will consider his request on humanitarian grounds. In spite of being so emotionally low Saharasri Ji again writes a personal letter to Shri Ram Jethmalani Ji expressing his helplessness to leave lucknow with a request to read out this letter during the court hearing .

·        On 26th Feb,’14 Senior Counsel Shri Ram Jethmalani informs the special bench about Saharasri Ji’s inability to be present in Hon’ble Supreme Court to attend the hearing on 26th February due to the critical condition of his mother. However, the justices pass an order to serve non bailable warrant in the name of Saharasri Ji and in order to ensure the presence on the next date of hearing i.e. on 4th March ’14.

·        On 27th Feb’14 Sahara files a special application seeking the recall of the non-bailable warrant issued with an undertaking of Saharasri Ji to be present on 4th March’14 without fail. On 27th Feb’, 14 evening, Lucknow police visits Sahara Shaher in Gomtinagar Lucknow to serve the warrant to Saharasri Ji.

·        During the same time, he was out of Sahara Shaher Lucknow to consult with the panel of doctors with certain medical reports of his mother and then also to visit a lawyer’s residence.

·        On his return late in the evening, Saharasri Ji was informed by the family members about the police visit and about the news appearing in certain section of India across the country.

·        On 28th Feb’14, in the early morning hours, as a law abiding citizen he willfully decides to submit himself to Lucknow police based on the warrant issued and asks them to proceed with their call of duty as per the directions given by Hon’ble Supreme Court.

·        Today morning, our senior counsels have again approached Hon’ble Supreme Court with a plea and a personal appeal from Saharasri Ji to recall the non-bailable warrant as he has willfully submitted himself to the Lucknow police. He gave an assurance to be present in Hon’ble Supreme Court on the day of next hearing i.e. 4th March’14.

·        At this moment, as we speak Saharasri Ji is with UP police and cooperating wholeheartedly with all the authorities in order to ensure the direction given by Hon’ble Supreme Court.

For the consumption of all those who are associated directly or indirectly, nationally and globally, with us, we wish to reiterate the fact that Sahara India Pariwar has always put our beloved nation ahead of any business interest and have always have ensured compliance to the law of the land across our businesses and processes.

From a humble beginning in 1978, Sahara India Pariwar has created many milestones in the journey and today we have a huge asset base which includes our 12Lac + karyakartas and crores and crores of investors. In the past also, we have faced many difficulties and each time we have reemerged more strongly and firmly. In our endeavor to build our nation, we not only diversified our business in the country but also expanded globally.

As you are aware that we are fighting an ongoing long legal battle and are confident that it will arrive to its logical conclusion soon, having stated the above, as a responsible business organization with high level of discipline and ethics we are committed to abide by the law of the land as we have been practicing always.

Last but not the least,  Sri Subrata Roy Sahara to me is not only a doting father but also a patriotic son of the soil who has contributed immensely to the country in many ways whether it is various social causes impacting lives of people across the length and breadth of the country or whenever India needed its son to stand up and shoulder responsibilities like helping the families of Kargil martyrs,  Mumbai terrorist attack martyrs and  victims of earth quacks, floods and other forms of natural calamity. Today it pains me to see his reputation and image being maligned in this manner and I humbly seek your support and cooperation.

In the end I would like to read a small message Hon’ble Saharasri Ji

“My office, my collegues, my family members are continuously getting calls, sms etc from media friends, relatives. They want to hear from me. All I want to say is This Is The Best Honour My Country Could Give Me

Thanking you,
Sahara Pranam.