• Securities Law

    SC Quashes Costs Imposed on SEBI by SAT Yet Again: Going in the Wrong Direction

    The Hon’ble Supreme Court of India has set aside the order for imposition of costs of Rs. 50,000 by the Securities Appellate Tribunal (“SAT”) on the Securities and Exchange Board of India (“SEBI”) for imputing manipulative intent upon the Appellant, a trader, despite there being ‘no shred of evidence’ to conclude the same and letting its ex-parte order continue for a year without application of mind. SEBI, to secure such relief had argued that the imposition of costs would affect the effective, independent and fearless discharge of official duties imposed on it for protection of investors. History has repeated itself as under similar circumstances in 2012, SC had reversed costs…

  • Securities Law

    Analysis of SEBI’s DVR Framework and Addressing Concerns

    A shareholder derives his power of voting in a company from Section 47 of the Companies Act 2013. With a general right to vote on every resolution, shareholders exert their ownership through voting on key corporate issues at the annual general meeting. These issues involve the appointment of the board of directors, issuing of securities etc. Certain restrictions can be placed on the voting rights of a shareholder by the articles of association of a company but generally, the shareholders have one vote per share in accordance with the principle of corporate governance. With the growth and increase in the scale of operation, a company needs more capital. Debt not…

  • Securities Law

    SEBI Proposes Pre-Deposit Appeals: What About Access to Justice?

    In an attempt to tackle frivolous appeals, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (“SEBI”) has proposed the introduction of a mandatory deposit of 10% of the penalty imposed by it, before an appeal from its orders/directions can be sought before the Securities Appellate Tribunal (“SAT”). This requirement would also stand, mutatis mutandis, in cases where SEBI has ordered for refunds, recovery, disgorgement or compounding against an entity. In this article, the author explores the jurisprudence behind “pre-deposit appeals”, its interplay with the fundamental right to access of justice, and its propriety, when applied to the peculiar jurisdictional realities of SEBI.   What is a Pre-Deposit Appeal? A pre-deposit appeal…

  • Securities Law

    Insider Trading: Will SEBI’s Informant Mechanism be Effective?

    The Securities and Exchange Board of India (“SEBI”) on 10th June 2019 proposed an ‘informant mechanism’ to safeguard the interests of the investors and tackle insider trading. In light of the difficulty in tracking illegal transactions, the SEBI has released a Discussion Paper which would be enforced by amending the SEBI (Prohibition of Insider Trading) Regulations, 2015 (“2015 Regulations”) as mentioned therein. The proposed mechanism seeks to provide ‘near absolute confidentiality along with appropriate surveillance.’ Genuine whistleblowers would get a monetary reward of up to ₹ 1 crore as well as amnesty from regulatory action. This Article aims to analyse the evolution of Insider Trading laws in India, their applicability and the minutiae…

  • Securities Law

    Section 15-J of the SEBI Act: SC Expands the AO’s Discretion in the Determination of Penalties

    The Supreme Court of India in the Case of Adjudicating Officer, SEBI Vs. Bhavesh Pabari (“Bhavesh Pabari”)has given an expansive and harmonious interpretation to Section 15-J of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 (“SEBI Act”) holding that the factors enumerated under Section 15-J are not exhaustive but rather illustrative factors to be taken into account by the Adjudicating Officer (“AO”) while adjudging the quantum of penalty to be imposed under Section 15-I and that the AO may take note of other factors as well, in the same analysis. In Bhavesh Pabari, the Apex Court had also delved into the question of the conflict of application between Section 15-J and…

  • Corporate & Commercial Law,  Securities Law

    The Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes Ordinance, 2019: Decoding the Law and Procedure

    The Banning of Unregulated Deposit Schemes Ordinance, 2019 (“Ordinance”) has been promulgated by the Hon’ble President of India on 21st February 2019. The Ordinance comes as a substantial step to tackle unregulated and fraudulent deposit schemes in the country that have been able to abuse the Indian “mindset” of savings and their weakness for investment opportunities that sound too good to be true. This article sets out the law and practice under the BUDS Ordinance to elucidate the legal framework behind it.   Background Deposit schemes and chit funds are not foreign or new concepts in India. Presently, there is a wide spectrum of deposit schemes, based around the basic premise of…

  • Securities Law

    SEBI’s Settlement Regulations 2018: Balancing Efficacy and Pragmatism

    The Securities and Exchange Board of India (“SEBI”) has introduced the SEBI (Settlement Proceedings) Regulations, 2018 (“2018 Regulations”) to replace the extant SEBI (Settlement of Administrative and Civil Proceedings) Regulations, 2014 (“2014 Regulations”). The 2018 Regulations have have come into force from 1stJanuary 2019 and are meant to add to and evolve the SEBI’s settlement framework so as to improve the existing processes and also act as an enabler for ease of doing business in the growing securities market. This article seeks to analyze the substantial developments brought forth by the 2018 Regulations.   Background SEBI had first put forth a consent mechanism for the settlement of offences under securities law in…

  • Securities Law

    SEBI’s Test of Fit and Proper Person: Dynamic Market, Dynamic Law

    The Securities and Exchange Board of India (“SEBI”), as the primary regulator of the securities market in India strives to create order and fairness in one of the fastest moving, complex, and ever fluctuating markets that is filled with the one of the most conniving bad elements. Yet, more or less, SEBI has performed its function to the letter of its preamble, that is, protecting the investor’s interests and promoting the healthy development of the securities market. This has, partly been achieved by enforcing an effective regime of stringent and dynamic provisions. The point of analysis in this Article is one such dynamic power in the hands of SEBI, that…

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