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SEBI close to completing probe in Adani-Hindenburg case

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In a status report filed with the Supreme Court on the Adani-Hindenburg probe, regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India said of the 24 investigations, 22 are final and two are in the interim stage.

It said that the 22 final investigation reports and one interim report were approved by the ‘competent authority’ while in the remaining matter, the interim findings have been approved. It added that it would take appropriate action based on the outcome of the investigations.

The investigation into the allegations made by Hindenburg Research about the Adani Group were launched in March, then in May an extension was granted till August 14 and a further extension of 15 days.

The mandate of SEBI was to probe whether the Adani group had violated the minimum public holding norms, whether there was a failure to disclose related party transactions, and whether there was any manipulation in stock prices as alleged by Hindenburg.

Its probe into the related party transactions was final, as were investigations into allegations of manipulation of stock prices, it said.

SEBI re-iterated that with respect to the interim investigations it had sought information from external agencies and entities and once it had received them would evaluate them for further processing.

There was one investigation on violation of minimum public holding norm, two investigations on stock price manipulations and 13 investigations into related party transactions.

Some of the related party transactions included audit qualifications on Adani Power in FY21 , transactions by Adani companies with Adani Infrastructure Management Services, award of coal supply contact to a Singapore entity controlled by a former Adani group company director (pan-Asia), and invoicing.

Other investigations pertained to possible violations of FPI regulations, takeover regulations, trading before and after the Hindenburg report, and insider trading regulations.

Investigations into possible violation of FPI regulations and violation of takeover rules were final.

Its probe into the violations of minimum public stake norm was interim because it had to cover 13 overseas entities, who were classified as public shareholders of Adani group companies. “As many of the entities linked to these foreign investors are located in tax haven jurisdictions, establishing the economic interest shareholders of the 12 FPIs remains a challenge,” the status report said.

It added that efforts were being made to gather pertinent details from five foreign jurisdictions.





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