SC considers new Sahara proposal

SC considers new Sahara proposal

In a glimmer of hope to the jailed Sahara chief, the Supreme Court on Thursday asked Sahara Group to produce “adequate communication” with Bank of China, the creditor, including its nod for sale of three overseas hotels to raise the money required to be deposited for the release of Subrata Roy.

A bench of Justices T S Thakur and A K Sikri also wanted to have “a clear picture” of the outstanding liability of Sahara along with the valuation report of the properties listed for sale within one week.

Senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan, appearing for Sahara, submitted a fresh proposal stating that they were ready to deposit Rs 3,000 crore cash in five days and another Rs 2,000 crore in the next 30 days thereafter.

Besides, the group could furnish a bank guarantee for the rest of Rs 5,000 crore in 60 days after selling its equities in hotels — one situated in London and two in New York.

The court, however, passed the order giving a week’s time to the group to submit an affidavit clarifying that it had received the necessary approval from the Bank of China for going ahead with the sale of the properties, in an indication that the bench may lift the embargo imposed on Sahara for the sale of properties.

The counsel also pleaded for keeping Roy in house arrest instead of Tihar jail here as incarceration in his case had resulted in greater hardship to the company and it would “never” be able to comply with the court’s order to refund investors’ money to Sebi.

“We appreciate everything but the sheer magnitude of the problem is formidable. We have to take into consideration personal liberty and the amount of the money to be refunded,” the bench said, reserving order on Sahara’s plea for modification of the court’s direction for their release.

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