Sebi goes transparent, to make public all its probes

Market regulator Sebi has decided to embark on a transparency drive with an aim to make its functions as transparent as possible.

As part of the proposed move, Sebi will make public all prosecution cases undertaken so far in the interest of the markets and investors and might consider revealing even some of its ongoing probes, depending on their sensibility.

The proposed moves, which also include appointment of a Chief Information Officer, are being seen as part of a new operating environment being ushered in by U K Sinha, who succeeded C B Bhave as Sebi Chairman in February this year.

In the past, Sebi has faced the flak for being surrounded in a veil of secrecy, which has been often defended in the name of possible misuse of the information by vested parties.
Sebi generally does not make public its ongoing probes on the ground that the investigations could be jeopardised by interest parties.

Besides, Sebi has also decided to appoint a CIO for maintenance and dissemination of all information from it.

The regulator has been told by its board of directors, which includes nominees from the central government, that it needs to appoint a CIO for proper information dissemination.

The board also suggested Sebi to develop a strategic action plan for a period of 3-5 years as against the current practice of such plans being framed for one financial year.

A longer-period strategic action plan would help the regulator maintain better business continuity and transparency in its various functions in the interest of investors and the markets, sources said.

Besides, the Sebi has been asked to undertake necessary measures for securing its data and those of market entities from possible cyber attacks and to maintain its business continuity.

The board has also suggested further strengthening of Sebi’s various regional offices, as against previously proposed attempts to centralise most of its functions.

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