However, the Apex Court has modified its earlier order by allowing Sahara to sell its immovable properties at nine cities in India so that it could raise Rs 10,000 crore for part repayment to investors. (Agencies)
The Apex Court had on March 26, 2014 asked Sahara Group to deposit Rs 10,000 crore as part payment of investors' Rs 24,000 crore that its two companies - Sahara India Real Estate Corporation Limited (SIRECL) and Sahara Housing Investment Corporation Limited (SHICL) had collected through Optionally Fully Convertible Debentures (OFCD) as a condition for the release of Roy and two other directors currently in judicial custody since March 4.
An Apex Court Bench of Justice TS Thakur and Justice AK Sikri allowed Sahara to encash its fixed deposits, bonds and securities and the generated money will be deposited in an account opened by market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).
The court also allowed Sahara to sell its properties located in nine cities to generate the balance Rs 5,000 crore that it has to pay SEBI in cash.
The court also allowed Sahara to mortgage its Aambey Valley property to raise a bank guarantee of Rs 5,000 crore.
The Sahara chief has earlier sought the court to modify an earlier order asking him to pay Rs 5,000 crore in cash besides a bank guarantee of an equivalent amount for securing his release.
Senior advocate Rajiv Dhawan, appearing for Roy, had said that the Sahara chief is the main decision maker and it will be quite "improbable" to strike a deal for arranging the money and hence, he can be put under house arrest outside a jail at his expense.
The counsel for SEBI, however, had opposed the plea saying this prayer has been declined several times in the past.
65-year-old Roy, who was sent to jail for non-refund of over Rs 20,000 crore to depositors, was asked by the court to make a fresh proposal for paying Rs 10,000 crore to get bail.
The court had passed the order on a plea filed by Roy challenging constitutional validity of its order passed on March 4 by which he was sent to jail for not complying with its order to deposit around Rs 20,000 crore of investors money with SEBI.
The bench, in a strongly-worded judgement, had come down heavily on the group for "systematically" frustrating and flouting all its orders with impunity on refunding investors' money.
It had said Sahara "adopted a demeanour of defiance constituting a rebellious behaviour, not amenable to the rule of law" and justified its decision to send Roy along with two promoters of two Sahara companies to jail.
However, the Apex Court has modified its earlier order by allowing Sahara to sell its immovable properties at nine cities in India so that it could raise Rs 10,000 crore for part repayment to investors.