Money & Banking

IBBI suspends registered valuer

KR Srivats New Delhi | Updated on January 12, 2020 Published on January 12, 2020

Use of ‘ibbi’ in domain name misleading

The use of ‘IBBI’ in the domain name has landed a valuer in trouble. The Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India (IBBI), authorised to oversee the functioning of ‘registered valuers’ in the country, has suspended Mukesh Kumar Rathi as ‘registered valuer’ for a period of three months.

Rathi, a chartered accountant, had created a ‘universal resource locator’ by the name of ‘www.ibbivaluer.com’, which was seen to be misleading and giving the impression that the registered valuer is closely associated with or is in some way related to the IBBI.

The IBBI, in its order, noted that the website uses the abbreviation ‘ibbi’ as part of domain name ‘ibbivaluer.com’ at a time when Rathi had not even passed the examination for registration as a valuer.

There is no evidence on record to show that he has derived any direct benefit but his intention behind such registration is ‘malafide’, the IBBI order said.

The regulator had, on August 30, 2019, issued a show-cause notice to Mukesh Kumar Rathi, which highlighted that IBBI was a statutory body and that it is not in the interest of its stakeholders or thepublic that its name be used randomly by anyone.

Lenient view

The three-month suspension will kick off 30 days from January 8, when the IBBI order was issued. As the profession of valuation is new and evolving in India, the IBBI said it was taking a lenient view on the matter.

It noted that in the valuation profession, it is imperative that only individuals with absolute integrity and unblemished reputation be registered as valuers.

Although Rathi has surrendered ‘ibbivaluer’ as part of his website and submitted confirmation of the same, the IBBI has pointed out that the domain name ‘ibbivaluer’ was used much before he got himself registered as a valuer with IBBI.

It has not agreed with Rathi’s contention that the domain name was used without understanding the consequences.

Aseem Chawla, Managing Partner, ASC Legal, a law firm, said the action suggests that the insolvency regulator espouses a high standard of ethics and governance.

It also shows that there is still a long way to go in the valuation profession ecosystem when it comes to imbibing the best practices, Chawla told BusinessLine.

Published on January 12, 2020
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