The Central Bureau of Investigation on Friday said that former National Stock Exchange Group Operating Officer Anand Subramanian was allegedly the unknown “Himalayan ascetic” who had manipulated the group’s former head Chitra Ramkrishna into taking favourable decisions, PTI reported.

The agency made the claim before a special Central Bureau of Investigation court while hearing a bail plea filed by Subramanian in the 2018 co-location case. The case pertains to allegations of preferential access to the National Stock Exchange’s algorithmic trading platform. Both Ramkrishna and Subramanian have been arrested in the case.

The Central Bureau of Investigation said it was looking into a trip made by Subramanian and Ramkrishna to Seychelles. It said that trip had been mentioned in the email exchanges between Ramkrishna and the mysterious ascetic.

The investigative agency said it was not an “innocuous leisure trip” and a thorough inquiry needs to be done, according to PTI.

Ramkrishna was the chief executive officer and the managing director of the National Stock Exchange from April 2013 to December 2016.

In February, a report by the Securities and Exchange Board of India had said that Ramakrishna took decisions at the stock exchange allegedly based on the guidance of an unknown Himalayan ascetic.

SEBI said that Ramakrishna shared confidential information about the National Stock Exchange, including its business plan and financial results, with the ascetic and that she also discussed performance appraisals of employees with him.

The regulatory body said that Ramakrishna had appointed Subramanian based on the guidance of the ascetic and gave “frequent, arbitrary and disproportionate” salary hikes to him. Subramaniam had joined the exchange in April 2013 with annual compensation of Rs 1.68 crore. By April 2016, his compensation had increased to Rs 4.21 crore, according to SEBI.

During Friday’s hearing, the Central Bureau of Investigation alleged that Ramakrishna was involved in several malpractices at the stock exchange during her tenure.

“They [Ramakrishna and Subramanian] visited tax havens like Seychelles and Mauritius,” the Central Bureau of Investigation told the court, according to The Indian Express. “In the email exchanges between Chitra and Subramanian, it was found that sensitive information was exchanged.”

Subramanian’s lawyer, however, said no offence was made out by his client even from a reading of the first information report.

“In fact, the FIR pertains to the applicant’s role in the unfair access to co-location facilities to one Sanjay Gupta and his company OPG Security Ltd...he is not in any manner connected with the alleged complaint,” he said.

The court will pronounce its verdict in the case on March 24.