New Delhi: Indiabulls Housing Finance Ltd (IHFL) moved the Supreme Court, Wednesday seeking an urgent listing of a plea which alleged that it misappropriated Rs 98,000 crore of public money. The matter was mentioned for urgent listing before a vacation bench of Justices Indira Banerjee and Ajay Rastogi.
Senior advocate AM Singhvi, appearing for IHFL, said that frivolous allegations have been levelled in the plea to blackmail the company due to which they have incurred a loss of Rs 7,000 crore of its market share in two days.
Singhvi told the bench that this plea has been filed for ‘blackmailing tactics’ and it is a ‘noble way of defaming’ the company as the petitioner, after filing the petition, leaked it to the media and the story was widely carried.
“I (IHFL) am a respondent (in the petition) and I am taking a risk by requesting for urgent listing. Please list this petition for hearing as we are incurring huge loss,” Singhvi told the bench.
When the matter was mentioned in the morning session, the bench told Singhvi that it will take a decision during the day on listing of the petition.
“We will check it up about what is the procedure which is to be followed. Filing of a petition is permitted but for listing it before the vacation bench, the matter has to be urgent,” the bench said.
Later, the bench said that the matter would be heard in July after the summer vacation as there were some defects in the plea filed by the petitioner.
“We (IHFL) have lost Rs 7,000 crore of market share. Somebody filed a writ petition and leaked it to the press. Every fact mentioned in the petition is wrong,” Singhvi told the bench. He alleged that the petitioner before the apex court is a ‘milk vendor’ who has bought four shares of the company some time back.
Later in the day, Indiabulls issued a press statement in the matter and and clarified its stand,
“Indiabulls submitted to the court that the petitioner bought 4 shares of Indiabulls worth Rs 3,000, May 9, 2019 with the sole purpose of blackmail and extortion,” the statement said.
“Without seeking remedy at appropriate forum for grievances, the petitioner has chosen to mere filing of a plea in Supreme Court under Article 32 to damage the company and the petitioner wilfully is not coming forward and mentioning the application so that it may not be heard,” the statement added.
It further said that purpose of the petitioner is being served by just filing the plea in the registry of the apex court as it is ‘enough to create turbulence in the financial markets and the real objective of the petitioner is not to get the application heard as it has no locus standi, merit or facts’.
The petition has alleged that money worth thousands of crores was siphoned off by Sameer Gehlaut, the chairman of the firm, and the directors of IHFL for their personal use.