A Delhi court extended the judicial custody of Chitra Ramkrishna, former managing director and chief executive of the National Stock Exchange (NSE), on Monday in the case of alleged stock market manipulation.
Special Judge Sanjeev Aggarwal extended Ramkrishna’s judicial custody till April 11. The court will then hear her bail application, to which the CBI has been asked to respond by April 8. On March 24, the court refused bail to former NSE group operating officer Anand Subramanian.
According to Sebi, several key decisions taken by Ramkrishna during her 2013-16 tenure as NSE chief, including Subramanian’s appointment, were guided by an unidentified yogi “who may be largely dwelling in the Himalayan ranges”. Ramkrishna is alleged to have shared confidential information of the bourse with the “Himalayan yogi”.
On March 8, the court pulled up the CBI for the slow pace of its investigation in the 2018 case. The reputation of the country is at stake and people will stop investing in India and move to China, the court had said.
The case pertains to charges of giving some brokers preferential access to the trading system through the NSE’s co-location facility (where brokers can buy “rack space” for their servers), early logins and “dark fibre”, which can allow trader split-second faster access to the data feed of the exchange. Even a split-second edge is considered capable of bringing huge gains to a trader.
The CBI had booked Sanjay Gupta, owner and promoter of Delhi-based OPG Securities Pvt Ltd, and others in the case. Between 2010 and 2014, Gupta allegedly colluded with stock exchange officials to abuse the NSE server architecture and even bribed Sebi officials.