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Another tape & a sack unspools on BSE

Mumbai, May 22: Phone, lies and tapes caught up with Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) again today when it served marching orders on a key debt segment official.

G. . Gera was suspended for “administrative mismanagement” — the ostensible reason trotted out by the exchange brass. Sources within, however, said the move masks a murkier story of bugged phones and lost confidence.

A report of the action against Gera, allegedly guilty of seeking unauthorised access to senior officials’ phones, has been sent to Sebi, but its officers were in Delhi. Gera could not be reached for his comment on the issue.

It was not clear why Gera was seeking unauthorised access to the telephone lines, which included those in the office of the exchange chief executive.

Whatever the outcome of the new saga, the revelations will make BSE’s goal of beating National Stock Exchange (NSE) a tough proposition. Debt segment was among the new sections doing well.

Gera’s fate is similar to that of A. A. Tirodkar, the senior BSE official who lost his job in the midst of a scam. The board of the exchange went in for a poll after the B. V. Chavan report on suspicions that Tirodkar played a key role in leaking the infamous Rathi tapes that felled the former president on allegations of insider trading two years back.

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