Sebi imposes Rs 27cr fine on NDTV’s Prannoy Roy, Radhika Roy for ‘violating regulatory norms’

NDTV promoters, Prannoy and Radhika Roy, and promoter group company RRPR Holding Pvt Ltd will appeal against the Sebi order that imposed a total fine of Rs 27 crore on them for alleged non-disclosure of certain loan agreements.

On Thursday, Sebi imposed the fine on them for violation of various securities norms by concealing information from shareholders regarding certain loan agreements.

According to Sebi, certain loan agreements had clauses that have an adversarial effect on NDTV shareholders.

In a filing to the stock exchanges late Thursday evening, the company said Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy, founders and promoters of NDTV, and promoter group company RRPR Holding Pvt Ltd have repeatedly said that they have never directly or indirectly, through any transactions or agreements, allowed for a transfer of control of NDTV.

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They continue to own and hold 61.45 per cent of the total paid-up share capital of NDTV, the filing said.

Referring to Sebi’s order passed on Thursday, the filing said the promoters and the promoter group company will “urgently appeal” against the order.

The order is based on alleged non-disclosure of loan agreements entered into in 2008-2010 by the founders and the promoter group company with Vishvapradhan Commercial Pvt Ltd and ICICI Bank Ltd.

“The core issue of the alleged surrender of control is pending adjudication at the Securities Appellate Tribunal, which, in 2019, granted a stay in favor of the founders of NDTV, which is still in operation,” the filing said.

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“The founders have informed the company that their lawyers, led by Fereshte Sethna, Senior Partner at DMD Advocates, hold that the Sebi order is inter alia based on an inaccurate assessment of facts and will not withstand scrutiny in appeal. The appeal will be filed immediately,” it added.

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