SGI Research & Analysis and its seven promoters from the capital market for ten years for allegedly duping two lakh investors and directed the entities to return Rs 1,500 crore along with interest.
In its order, Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) has restrained SGI and its promoters /directors --Lokeshwar Dev, Priyanka Saraswat Dev, Pradeep Sharma, Baldev Raj Sharma, Ramesh Sharma, Sanjeev Sharma and Sonia Sharma--from accessing the securities market.
It also alleged that Lokeshwar Dev,promoter and director of SGI, had raised more than Rs 1,500 crore belonging to two lakh investors and had "vanished alongwith his entire staff". SGI, incorporated in June 2010, had allegedly issued preference shares of Rs 10 each at a premium of Rs 1,500 per share.
It had promised prospective investors that the shares would be listed after the Sebi's approval and the listing price would be around Rs 2,000 per share.
The company had said subscription for the preference shares was opened in October, 2010 and the scheme may get closed in January, 2011, according to the Sebi order.
Sebi said it has barred these entities from "accessing the securities market and further prohibited from buying, selling or otherwise dealing in securities and being associated with the securities market in any manner whatsoever, directly or indirectly through any person /entity...for a period of 10 years."
The regulator also directed the entities to jointly "refund" the money collected towards subscription of convertible preference shares, to the subscribers of such preference shares "alongwith annual interest of 15 per cent per annum" from the date of receipt of money till the date of such repayment.
SGI, which had issued convertible preference shares, to investors was required to apply for listing those shares to a recognised stock exchanges. As per rules, an offer to fifty or more persons becomes public issue by virtue and thereby attracts compulsory listing.