Embattled businessman Jignesh Shah on Friday denied any violation of insider trading norms following Sebi order against 13 entities, including his relatives, with regard to trading in shares of MCX and erstwhile FTIL even as he alleged “conspiracy” against him. On Wednesday, Sebi ordered impounding of “averted losses” worth over Rs 125 crore through alleged insider trading in MCX and its erstwhile promoter FTIL by 13 persons, including relatives of Shah and former top executives, with ‘prior information’ about the NSEL case.
Shah had served as Chairman and Managing Director of Financial Technologies India Ltd (FTIL) at the time when the alleged insider trading happened. However, no order has been passed against him directly.
Addressing the media in Mumbai, Shah said people bought the shares in the companies in compliance with regulations and claimed that information about NSEL “was not unpublished”. “I stand tall, no agency has found anything against me,” Shah said, adding that he decided to address the media for the first time since the crisis broker as now his family members are being targeted.
Shah is the chairman emeritus of 63 moons technologies, formerly known as FTIL — which was promoted by him. “The NSEL crisis was not first time that crisis had happened in the market, but the intention was not to solve the (NSEL) crisis but to eliminate the group and thus the competition from the market,” Shah said.
He also alleged that the erstwhile Forward Markets Commission (FMC) was working closely with a former finance minister. “There should be investigation whether they have done this on behest of UPA 2 government,” he added.
Shah noted that FMC, which has now merged with regulator Sebi, and the government, could have solved the crisis but instead was focused on declaring NSEL group “not fit and proper and eliminate the competition”.
Accusing the former finance minister and two ex-bureaucrats of being part of the conspiracy against his group, Shah said he has kept legal options open against them. Shah also noted that “no single money trail has been traced back to us but to the defaulters”.
He also claimed that there was a “conspiracy against us” at the behest of the previous government. 63 moons technologies said it is upon its board to decide if the company will approach the Securities Appellate Tribunal against Sebi’s order.
“Well, the 13 individuals who are effected will consider appealing to the SAT. The matter will go the board (of 63 moons) and the board will take a decision whether to support the 13 individuals…,” 63 moons technologies Chairman Venkat Chary told reporters here.
The National Spot Exchange Ltd (NSEL), promoted by FTIL, had to suspend trading on July 31, 2013 after a major payment crisis broke out at the bourse.
In its orders, Sebi said its investigations into alleged insider trading in shares of Multi Commodity Exchange of India (MCX) and the erstwhile FTIL found that 13 persons “prima facie” traded in these stocks when in possession of ‘unpublished price sensitive information’.
Various probe agencies and regulators are investigating the NSEL fiasco, including the role of Shah and others. The NSEL scam came to light in 2013 during the previous UPA regime.