Mumbai: In the legal fight between Sebi and two Sahara group companies over the debenture issue, the market regulator Friday said it will seek a four weeks' extension from the Supreme Court, which had asked the SAT to conclude the dispute by October 4.
"I will apply for a four-week extension to the Supreme Court, so that your lordship is not pressured by time," Securities Exchange Board of India (Sebi) counsel Arvind P Datar told Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) presiding officer N K Sodhi here Friday, while wrapping up his arguments in the case.
The appellant Sahara's lawyer, senior advocate Fali S Nariman, also concluded his arguments before the tribunal.
Responding to Sebi's Friday's decision to seek more time, the Sahara counsel said that he will not contest it.
The dispute relates to a June 2011 Sebi order which had asked two Sahara group entities -- Sahara India Real Estate and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation -- to refund Rs 19,000 crore raised from an optionally fully convertible debenture (OFCD) issue with 15 percent interest, and restrained them from accessing capital markets, for allegedly violating Sebi regulations.
It also restrained Sahara Group promoter Subrata Roy and three of its directors from associating with any listed company or any company looking to raise money from the public.
Sahara Group moved the Supreme Court, which did not entertain its case, but asked the company to go before SAT.
While the company claims that existing regulations do not empower the Sebi to regulate a private issue like the one it carried out, Sebi argues that the OFCD issue in question is nothing but a disguised public issue.
Sebi charged Sahara with disguising its prospectus for OFCD issue as a draft red herring prospectus as it contained the details of the price and the quantum of the issue.