In yet another setback for controversial media group NDTV, SEBI has imposed a penalty of Rs. 12 lakh on New Delhi Television Ltd (NDTV) for failing to make timely disclosures to the stock exchanges.
Reportedly, the order comes after the SEBI noticed multiple disclosure lapses by NDTV and noted non-compliance with the Substantial Acquisition of Shares and Takeover (SAST) Regulations.
SEBI examined that Indiabulls Financial Services in January 2008 had acquired 40 lakh shares of NDTV, amounting to 6.40 per cent of the total share capital of the firm. The promoters of NDTV acquired 20.28 per cent of the total share capital of NDTV in July 2008.
However, the entities were to make requisite disclosures to NDTV under relevant provisions of SAST norms, while NDTV, in turn, was supposed to report the same to BSE as well as NSE. As per the order, the controversial media group delayed in disclosing information related to change in the shareholdings of its promoters and Indiabulls Financial Services.
“The allegation of delayed disclosures under Regulation 7(3) of SAST.. to BSE and NSE against the Notice stands established,” Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) said.
Consequently, a penalty of Rs 12 lakh has been imposed on NDTV which shall be payable “jointly and severally” by the media company.
Earlier this week, the SEBI had barred NDTV’s key promoters – Prannoy Roy, Radhika Roy and their holding firm RRPR Holdings from accessing the capital markets for two years and also restrained the two individuals from holding any board or top management role at the company in this period.
However, Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy have now got a stay from Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) against an earlier order passed by SEBI barring NDTV promoters from holding managerial positions at the news television network.
This is not the first time that NDTV is facing charges for indulging in such financial irregularities. Earlier, NDTV had got a show cause notice from the Income Tax Department. The IT Department show cause notice pertained to the IT Department levying a penalty of Rs. 436.80 crores for the assessment year 2009-10.