According to reports, the government is investigating the legality of moving unclaimed monies from the Sahara-Sebi Refund Account to the Consolidated Fund of India. It is believed to include a provision for later-filed claims by investors. This decision comes after the death of Sahara Group founder Subrata Roy last week.
According to a story in The Economic Times, there have been very few claimants in the 11 years since the return account was formed. According to the daily, an unnamed official stated that an option to convert the funds to the Consolidated Fund of India with a separate account to refund investors would be investigated.
If, after verifying the information provided, Sebi is unable to locate all or some of its subscribers, the funds collected from such subscribers will be appropriated to the government.
According to the article, the money are likely to be used for pro-poor projects or public welfare.
The total amount collected from the group and deposited in state-owned banks as of March 31 was Rs 25,163 crore, after Rs 138 crore was paid to 17,526 applications involving 48,326 accounts. The Central Registrar of Cooperative Societies received Rs 5,000 crore for payout against lawful dues of authentic depositors. To facilitate the refund procedure, Home Minister Amit Shah developed a separate portal for Sahara depositors.
Subrata Roy was one of India Inc's greatest personalities and one of the country's most renowned rags-to-riches stories. Sahara formerly sponsored India's national cricket team, and its properties included the Plaza Hotel in New York and Grosvenor House in London. He was also a co-owner of the old Formula One team Force India.
His problems began in 2010, when Sebi directed two Sahara businesses not to raise cash from equity markets or issue any securities to the public. Roy was arrested in 2014 after failing to appear in a contempt action stemming from his companies' failure to refund over Rs 20,000 crore to investors.
Sahara was requested to deposit an estimated Rs 24,000 crore with Sebi to get additional refunds from investors. The firm claimed to have returned 95% of the investors directly, resulting in "double payment."