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SAT expresses concern over Sebi’s decision on Goenka’s role in Zee group

The bench asked Sebi to file a reply in the matter by 4 September and a rejoinder thereafter by Goenka by 7 September. The matter will be heard for final disposal on 8 September.

Priyanka Gawande

Mumbai: The Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) on Wednesday said that it is ‘not satisfied’ with the Securities and Exchange Board of India’s (Sebi) recent confirmatory order against Zee’s former MD CEO, Punit Goenka, that barred him from holding any key managerial position in Zee group companies.

A bench led by Justice Tarun Agarwala said, “We don’t agree with the impugned order. We are not satisfied with eight months. This can’t go on indefinitely. The merger has happened with the consensus of the shareholders. There is public interest involved. If the public says that he should be the director, then it does have a bearing.”

The bench asked Sebi to file a reply in the matter by 4 September and a rejoinder thereafter by Goenka by 7 September. The matter will be heard for final disposal on 8 September.

On 14 August, the markets regulator upheld its 12 June interim order restraining Punit Goenka and his father, Subhash Chandra, from holding key positions in Zee group companies till further notice. Sebi’s order barred them from holding key positions in an alleged funds diversion case.

The order said Goenka and Chandra were involved in schemes and transactions through which vast amounts of public money belonging to Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd were diverted to private entities owned and controlled by these people.

Refusing relief, Sebi chairperson Madhabi Puri Buch said: “The two notices shall not hold a position of a director or a key managerial position in Zee group entities. The investigation in the matter by Sebi shall be completed in a time-bound manner and, in any event, within eight months from the date of this order.”

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Updated: 30 Aug 2023, 02:46 PM IST

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