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SEBI drops charges against former bureaucrat Shankar Aggarwal in DishTV matter

In its final order in the DishTV matter, SEBI dropped all its adverse observations against Shankar Aggarwal and the others without any further directions.
The final order by the market regulator, SEBI, involving DishTV’s independent directors has become a major relief for the former bureaucrat Shankar Aggarwal. Aggarwal is an independent director on the board of the Multi Commodity Exchange (MCX), in addition to being on the board of Dish TV. SEBI had barred Aggarwal from attending the board and committee meetings of MCX, pending its final observations in the Dish TV matter. At MCX, Aggarwal is in line to take over as the board chairman due to the seniority factor, and any delay in SEBI’s observations could have affected his prospects, experts told BusinessLine.

In its final order in the DishTV matter, SEBI dropped all its adverse observations against Aggarwal and the other two DishTV independent directors, including Bhagwan Das Narang and Rashmi Aggarwal, without any further directions. In its final orders, SEBI said that the company made the required disclosures , and was dropping its show cause notice issued against the independent directors.

SEBI was delayed in issuing its final order, but the Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT) set a four-week deadline for the regulator. SAT had observed that SEBI had failed to pass the final observations against Aggarwal in the stipulated time and hence lifted the restrictions placed on him concerning the affairs of MCX.

In May, just two days after Aggarwal said he would start attending the board and committee meetings of the exchange in the public interest, SEBI issued a diktat to restrict him from doing the same. SEBI had advised Aggarwal not to attend any Board/Committee meeting of the Exchange till further communication.

SEBI had passed an ex-parte order against Dish TV’s three independent directors without a prior hearing. But SEBI has restricted only Aggarwal from attending the board and committee meetings of MCX, while there was no such restraint against the other IDs of Dish TV on their attending meetings in other companies. The Hindu BusinessLine

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