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Court for Sebi cases on way

Sinha: Tackling frauds

Mumbai, Dec. 15 (PTI): Sebi chairman U.K. Sinha said the market regulator had begun utilising its new powers to act against fraudsters and market manipulators in a big way and a process has been initiated to set up a special court to hear Sebi-related matters for faster prosecution.

“We have already utilised these powers and my worry is that this should become an act of Parliament very soon, because twice the ordinance has already been promulgated.

“Many of the actions we have already taken (based on these powers), we would be at a very major disadvantage and what will we do if it does not become an act,” Sinha said in an interview.

Earlier this year, Sebi was granted greater powers through an ordinance, which has been already promulgated twice by the government.

The ordinance needs to be replaced by an act, for which the Securities Laws Amendment Bill is pending before Parliament.

The parliamentary standing committee needs to give a report on the bill before it can be taken up for passage.

Finance minister P. Chidambaram yesterday had said the government would have to take the unprecedented move of promulgating the ordinance for the third time if the panel did not submit its report and the bill was not passed before the end of the current Parliament session.

Sinha said sufficient safeguards had been put in place against any misuse of the new powers and all the genuine “questions and worries” about any such abuse had been addressed.

There have been many major changes in the capital markets segment in the recent months, and Sebi has taken a number of actions against erring companies, including against those having fraudulently raised money from investors.

At the same time, there have been instances where investors have not been able to get back their money despite Sebi’s action against the erring companies, as the matter got stuck in legal issues and the judicial processes.

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