SEBI has disposed the show-cause notice issued on former TV anchor Hemant Ghai and his family on February 24, 2022, for alleged manipulative trades and decided to re-investigate the matter.

An order passed by Whole Time Member SK Mohanty said, “SEBI shall endeavour to complete the investigation within six months and thereafter, to conclude the matter expeditiously.” The regulator observed a high correlation between the recommendations made by Ghai in the show ‘Stock 20-20’ that was being co-hosted by him on CNBC Awaaz between January 2019 and May 2020, and the trades of his wife Jaya Hemant Ghai and his mother Shyam Mohini Ghai executed during the period.

Senior Counsel Mustafa Doctor and Parinam Law Associated represented the Ghai family in the matter. In October 2020, SEBI had passed an interim order after preliminary investigations and issued certain directions against three persons, including restraining them from the securities market till further directions. Last September, the interim order was confirmed and a penalty of ₹2.95 crore was levied. The interim order was passed pending investigation.

On conclusion of the investigation, SEBI passed an an interim impounding order in February directing the noticees to deposit an additional ₹3.9 crore for alleged additional unlawful gains arising out of their trading activities. On February 24, a common show-cause notice was served on the noticees with various facts unearthed during the investigation pertaining to the trading activities of the noticees and the consequent allegations that flowed from such facts about the noticees’ trading activities.

In April, the Securities Appellate Tribunal quashed the penalty levied by SEBI and directed it to hear the matter within six weeks from the date of filing of reply by the appellant and pass orders within two months thereafter.

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