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Sebi orders Ion Exchange to refund crores in 13-year-old case


Sebi orders Ion Exchange to refund crores in 13-year-old case
Back in November 2003, Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) had ordered the company to refund little over Rs 20 crore raised by way of unregistered collective investment schemes in the name of purchase and maintenance of land.

New Delhi: In a nearly 13-year-old illegal money pooling case, Sebi has ordered Ion Exchange Enviro Farms to deposit Rs 3 crore within a week’s time and then Rs 5 crore every month till the dues of investors are settled.

Back in November 2003, Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) had ordered the company to refund little over Rs 20 crore raised by way of unregistered collective investment schemes in the name of purchase and maintenance of land.

After the Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) upheld Sebi’s order in May 2006, the firm approached the Supreme Court against the SAT order but the plea was rejected in February 2013.

In a seven-page order dated August 12, Sebi’s Recovery Officer D V Sekhar has directed the company to Rs 3 crore, as committed by it, within a week. Further, the company has to deposit Rs 5 crore per month from September 20 till the completion of entire balance dues along with assured returns, interests, costs and charges, the regulator said.

The latest move is part of Sebi’s recovery process as the the firm failed to refund the investors within the mandated timeframe. In this regard, various bank and demat accounts were attached in December 2015.

Apart from directing Ion Exchange to deposit the money in instalments, the regulator has ordered it to submit all original title deeds owned or held by the company in the name of its nominees within two weeks’ time.

Although Ion Exchange claimed to have repaid the money in the form of transfer of lands to most of the investors, Sebi said the firm “has not furnished any details of the claimed repayments in the form of transfer of title of lands or payments towards development expenses.”

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