The Sahara group on Tuesday made a fresh proposal before the Supreme Court for depositing Rs 20,000 crore investors’ money with SEBI to secure release of its chief Subrata Roy who has been behind the bars along with company’s two directors since March 4 when they were sent to judicial custody.
In the proposal, the group assured the apex court to deposit Rs 2,500 crore within three working days and pay three installments of Rs 3,500 cr each at the end of June, September, December and the remaining Rs 7,000 crore by March 31, 2015. A bench of justices K S Radhakrishnan and J S Khehar, however, refused to take the proposal on record and asked the group to file the document in the registry after which it will consider.
The group, in its proposal, also said that it is willing to give an irrevocable bank guarantee at any time for any unpaid amount and sought court’s permission to allow the group companies to operate bank accounts which have been frozen. The group had earlier made a similar proposal by offering to make cash payment of Rs 2,500 crore within three days and Rs 14,900 crore in five installments by the end of July, 2015. It had contended that only Rs 15,400 crore remained to be paid.
The apex court had rejected the proposal on March 7. The bench, however, continued with the hearing on maintainability of Roy’s petition challenging his detention by the apex court.
Senior advocates Ram Jethmalani and C A Sundaram, appearing for the group and Roy, submitted that the apex court’s order passed on March 4 is illegal and the plea be decided on merit.
Sebi had earlier contended that Roy’s petition is not maintainable as he challenged the court’s verdict by filing writ petition. It submitted that Roy can seek review of the order. The hearing remained inconclusive and will resume tomorrow.
The beleaguered Sahara chief challenged before the Supreme Court his detention order calling it “illegal and unconstitutional” and demanded his release. On March 4, the two-judge bench had sent Roy and two of company’s directors to Tihar jail in connection with the case relating to non-refund of Rs 20,000 crore to its investors.
Roy questioned the constitutional validity of the detention order, saying it was passed after an “illusionary” hearing. “The petitioner submits that the impugned order made after such illusionary hearing is in total defiance of the rules framed under the Constitution and is gross violation of principles of natural justice,” he said in his petition.
“The Bench of this Court without compliance with law and principles of natural justice has incarcerated him under a law which does not exist and without following the ordinary cannons of natural justice.
“The petitioner submits the order of incarceration dated March 4 is a complete nullity and it is duty of this Court to terminate this unlawful detention and release the petitioner forthwith,” he said.