Business News

Sahara is obstructing the auction of its Aamby Valley project, Sebi tells Supreme Court

The court had earlier ordered that the property be attached and sold in order to recover dues worth Rs 24,000 crore from Sahara.

Capital markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India told the Supreme Court on Tuesday that the Sahara Group was obstructing the auction of its project in Aamby Valley city in Pune district, Mint reported. The court had ordered the project be attached in order to recover dues from the company.

The court said the matter will be forwarded to Chief Justice Dipak Misra who will decide on the case.

On August 14, the Bombay High Court had put up the prime property’s reserve price at Rs 37,392 crore for the public auction. The reserve price is the minimum price at which a seller is willing to sell his item at an auction. The seller can lower, but cannot increase the reserve price.

On August 9, Sahara’s advocate Kapil Sibal had requested the Supreme Court to stay the auction, saying that the company would pay Rs 1,500 crore of its dues. However, the court said it did not believe Sahara would actually pay the amount. The bench told the company that it would pass an “appropriate order” if Rs 1,500 crore was paid by September 7.

The Aamby Valley case

The Sahara Group has been embroiled in a lengthy court battle with Sebi over a case involving a Rs 24,000-crore refund to investors.

On February 6, the Supreme Court had ordered the attachment of Aamby Valley to recover dues from the company. The prime property is worth more than Rs 39,000 crore.

The court had extended Sahara chief Subrata Roy’s parole after the company deposited Rs 600 crore with Sebi. Sahara had acknowledged that it owed Rs 14,000 crore as principal money to Sebi, but the top court had denied its offer to clear its dues by July 2019.

The bench, led by Chief Justice Dipak Misra, had ordered the attachment to fast-track the recovery of dues the company owes investors. It had also asked Sahara to provide a list of properties that were free from litigation and mortgage so the information could be released to the public. The court said that it would focus on repayment of the principal amount before ensuring that the group repaid the interest.

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