The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has fined three top officials of Jaiprakash Associates and others, including executive chairman Manoj Gaur and members of his family, for insider trading in 2008.
The regulator has imposed a collective penalty of Rs70 lakh on those indicted for purchasing shares in the company after the trading window was closed for company officials and their relatives, using inside information.
Those charged and fined are Gaur, his wife Urvashi, brother Sameer, senior company vice president Harish K Vaid, and company secretary and a whole time director S D Nailwal.
The market regulator says it had investigated the trading pattern in Jaiprakash Associates (Jaypee) between 29 September and 27 October 2008. The investigations revealed that the company officials and their relatives were in possession of unpublished price sensitive information during this period.
The SEBI order is likely to be challenged. Manoj Gaur said in a statement issued late on Friday, "The findings in the SEBI order are completely erroneous and contrary to facts. It is unfortunate that despite adequate representation to the adjudicating officer, frivolous inferences have been drawn. Aggrieved by the order, we are in the process of challenging the same before the Securities Appellate Tribunal."
Gaur said the SEBI order related to the purchase of 1,000 shares by his wife and 7,400 shares by his brother between 13 October and 16 October 2008. These purchases were not based on any insider information and had not even been sold.