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Srei deal with Dundee under Sebi scanner

Calcutta, Oct. 5: The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) says Srei’s acquisition of Dundee Mutual Fund may come under its scanner in view of the arrest of Dinesh Jain, one of its senior officials, for illegitimate badla deals.

R. M. Joshi, Sebi executive director in charge of takeover and mutual funds, said: “We have already given our in-principle approval to the takeover, but the Calcutta Police having hauled up Srei Securities allegedly for irregularities in dealing in shares, we may look into the acquisition again.”

The Calcutta Police arrested Jain, managing director of Srei Securities — a subsidiary of Srei International Finance Ltd — on Wednesday evening for his company’s connections with Dinesh Kumar Singhania, a defaulter-member of the Calcutta Stock Exchange who is on the run.

Hemant Kanoria, promoter and managing director of Srei International Finance, said his company had not received Sebi’s approval for the takeover as yet, though it had fulfilled all requirements. Commenting on the arrest of Jain, he emphatically denied having any exposure in illegal badla. “We still have no idea as to why Jain was arrested by the police,” he said.

He, however, admitted that Srei had invested in shares and engaged Singhania to buy the shares from the market. “Like any other individual or company, we, too, had invested in shares. We had engaged Singhania as a broker. But is that a crime' Singhania was the president of the Calcutta Stock Exchange,” he added.

Srei reached an agreement with Dundee a few months ago to acquire its schemes, which had a total corpus of around Rs 40 crore. It chose to buy Dundee because its assets were invested mostly in debt instruments, Sunil Kanoria, a director, had earlier explained.

Singhania bail

PTI adds: In a fresh setback to former president of the Calcutta Stock Exchange Dinesh Singhania, an alleged key conspirator in the Rs 150 crore scam at the bourse, a city court today cancelled his bail in a case related to dishonour of cheques issued to the exchange.

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