Delhi High Court refused to issue notice in the IndiaBulls case filed against it by a group of highly decorated citizens including former Delhi High Court Chief Justice A P Shah, former Chief of Naval Staff Admiral L Ramdas, former IAS officer Aruna Roy and activist-lawyer Prashant Bhushan.
Indiabulls counsel Mukul Rohatgi on Friday argued in court that the PIL alleging various illegalities and malpractices on IndiaBulls’ dealings with public money was largely “malicious” and “malafide” and was causing loss to the business and reputation of the company.
Indiabulls claims the NGO has moved the court without giving any representation to any authority and falsely stated in petition that ‘authorities concerned have failed to do any investigation into these allegations’.
Counsel A.M. Singhvi, also representing IndiaBulls, said the current PIL was a ‘supari interest litigation’ as even the pendency of the petition is a threat to the well-being of the company.
A bench of Chief Justice DN Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar heard arguments for nearly two hours before listing it for further hearing on 27th September.
The PIL filed through Advocate Kamini Jaiswal – Citizens Whistle Blowers Forum v Union of India – seeks a ‘time bound investigation by a SIT into various serious illegalities, violations and siphoning committed by the promoters of Indiabulls Housing Finance Limited (IBHFL), its subsidiaries and their promoters.’
The petition alleges, “details of borrowings inter alia show that over 12000 companies are registered at the same address as that of Indiabulls thereby suggesting a staggering number of dummy companies having been created by Indiabulls.”
The petition alleges violation of Section 77(Duty to Register charges), Section 129 (Financial Statement), Section 447(Punishment for Fraud) of Companies Act, 2013 and Section 403(Misappropriation of Property), Section 406 (Breach of Trust), and Section 420 (Cheating) of the Indian Penal Code and various other provisions and regulations governing them.
The NGO has claimed ‘complete inaction’ of the authorities against IndiaBulls who have taken huge loans from the public and private banks and have lent them to dummy companies created by them, thus filling their own pockets and evading tax.
Besides demanding a SIT probe, the petition has also sought direction:
– ‘to the Ministry of Corporate Affairs to conduct an investigation through the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) into the irregularities’ in the matter;
– ‘to the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) to conduct a thorough enquiry and investigation into the affairs of IBHFL.’
While listing the matter for 27th September, court said it needs to go through the allegations made against the company.
–India Legal Bureau