SAT disposes RIL appeal seeking documents from Sebi

Tags: News
Securities Appellate Tribunal has disposed of an appeal filed by Reliance Industries against Sebi, after the market regulator agreed to provide certain documents to the corporate house for inspection in connection with a long-running insider trading probe.

The case relates to investigation into suspected insider trading violations way back in 2007 and another appeal by Reliance Industries in this matter is currently being heard by SAT against Sebi's rejection to a consent settlement plea.

In this matter, RIL had asked Sebi to furnish certain documents for inspection and it had filed a separate appeal after the regulator refused to share those documents.

In a hearing on December 20, SAT "disposed of" this particular appeal after RIL decided not to press for the same as Sebi said it was "ready and willing to furnish copies of those eight documents".

Sebi's counsel also said that inspection of some of those documents have been already given to RIL, "without prejudice to the contention that the said documents have no relevance".

This particular appeal was filed with SAT to challenge a communication dated November 2, 2012 whereby Sebi had has declined to give inspection of documents sought by RIL.

Meanwhile, the tribunal will hear RIL appeal against Sebi decision to reject its application for consent settlement on January 6.

Earlier this month, SAT had adjourned the hearing on alleged insider trading violations by RIL to December 20 and had said that it will not grant any further adjournments and wants to close case by the end of this month.

The case dates back to 2007, when before the merger of RPL with itself, RIL short-sold 4.1 per cent stake in Reliance Petroleum for Rs 4,023 crore in the futures market to allegedly prevent a price correction and later in the spot market, covering the share sales in the futures market.

The company had allegedly booked a profit of Rs 513 crore in the futures segment through this deal.

Reliance Petroleum was later merged with RIL. Sebi claimed that the company was aware of the sale of shares and sold futures ahead of that, therefore amounting to insider trading.

Moreover, Sebi had turned down RIL's application to settle the matter.

In May 2012, Sebi had tightened the consent mechanism framework. As a result, many cases, including those related to insider trading, are not being settled through this mechanism.

On January 3 this year, Sebi published a list of 149 consent pleas, including 16 from entities related to the RIL Group, which it had not found suitable for consent settlement.

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