Sahara says Rs 3,226 cr paid to over 10 lakh cooperative society members in 75 days
Beleaguered Sahara group on Monday said it has paid Rs 3,226 crore to more than 10 lakh members of its four associated cooperative credit societies in the last 75 days, including some payments against requests from people who had complained about delayed payouts.
The group said there has been some delay in payments, primarily due to an embargo imposed for last eight years by the Supreme Court, while approximately Rs 22,000 crore of its funds, including interest amount, are deposited in the Sahara-Sebi account, which was created to refund bondholders of two group firms.
In a statement, Sahara said Sebi has been able to repay only Rs 106.1 crore to the investors in these eight years despite repeated attempts, which the group said only affirms its view that there are no claimants left as most bondholders were already repaid before it was asked by the regulator to deposit the money.
The group said it is hopeful that this amount of Rs 22,000 crore would eventually come back to it after due verification, as per directives of the apex court.
Referring to the embargo on it, Sahara said, “If any money is generated through selling or mortgaging assets of the group (including co-operatives) or from its joint ventures the same has to be deposited in the Sahara-Sebi account, as per the directives of Supreme Court.”
“We cannot use even a single rupee for organisational work, not even for repayment to the esteemed investors,” it added.
In its statement, the group further said the total amount of Rs 3,226.03 crore paid to its members in the last 75 days includes 2.18 per cent towards requests from the delayed-payments complainants.
“The total delayed-payment complainants are 0.07 per cent of the total 8 crore investors Sahara has across India,” it said.
“Sahara in the last 10 years has made maturity payment of Rs 1,40,157.51 crore to 5,76,77,339 esteemed investors. Out of this only around 40 per cent cases are of reinvestment, the rest have been paid in cash,” it said.
The Central Registrar of Cooperative Societies had recently sought a probe by the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) into investments made by four cooperatives associated with the Sahara group from over Rs 86,600 crore collected by them, but the credit societies had refuted the charges and said all their investments have been made as per the law.
The societies had also said they have contested the allegations at the “appropriate forum”.