Anjani Sinha, former Chief Executive Officer of National Spot Exchange, was arrested by the Economic Offences Wing of Mumbai police on Thursday for his alleged role in the bourse’s Rs 5,600-crore payment crisis.

Sinha was arrested after interrogation for over eight hours by the police. The investigative agency had summoned him 10 days ago, but he sought time due to bad health.

Facing trouble

Jignesh Shah, Chairman of Financial Technologies, the holding company of NSEL, is likely to face trouble as Sinha has implicated him and other directors in the case.

Earlier, Sinha had filed an affidavit taking the entire blame on himself and his subordinates, while giving a clean chit to the promoters and directors.

The NSEL Investors’ Forum has expressed surprise over Sinha’s new statement implicating Shah and directors of NSEL.

“This questions the reliability of Anjani Sinha and investors are surprised how such an unreliable person was given the task of managing the exchange,” said Sharad Kumar Saraf, NSEL Investors Forum Chairman.

Last week, the Economic Offences Wing arrested Jai Bahukhandi, Assistant Vice-President in-charge of Warehousing at NSEL, for alleged violation of Know Your Client verification norms and making misleading statements on stocks in warehouses.

The arrests come two months after the exchange suspended trading and defaulted nine times on its proposed settlement plan.

Amit Mukherjee, Assistant Vice-President, Business Development of the exchange, was also picked up in the case relating to the settlement default.

Earlier in the day, Jignesh Shah and Joseph Massey presented themselves at the Economic Offences Wing office for interrogation.

Power to attach assets

Meanwhile, the Mumbai District Collector has given police the powers to attach the assets of NSEL promoters and directors to safeguard the interest of investors.

The power to seize the asset of NSEL officials was given under the Maharashtra Protection of Interest of Depositors Act, sources said.

Under the Act, the Economic Offences Wing can also attach the property of all the accused named in the first information report, which includes 24 defaulters who have refused to settle their outstanding position. .

suresh.iyengar@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on October 17, 2013)
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