There is no relief for the embattled Chairman of Sahara India Pariwar Subrata Roy as the Supreme Court has yet again denied him bail. The Supreme Court has insisted that Sahara should pay Rs 10,000 crore to market regulator SEBI, if he wants to get bail. The flamboyant Roy has been in Tihar jail since March 2014, for not complying with the court’s order to return Rs 24,000 crore, to investors.
What is more damaging for Sahara is the Supreme Court has set fresh terms for releasing Roy. The apex court has said, that, Subrata Roy’s release from jail is subject to furnishing Rs 5,000 crore in cash and Rs 5,000 crore in bank guarantee. Things touched bleak for the flamboyant Roy when his counsel and senior advocate Kapil Sibal, informing the court that the bank has “backed out” from giving the guarantee and there is no money currently for his release.
The three-judge Bench led by Justice T.S. Thakur, said, this judgment making his release conditional on payment of guarantee, was drafted on the assurance given by Sahara, that they had the bank guarantees ready. “Yes but the bank backed out after media reports came out on the proceedings,” Sibal replied. The lawyer added that it would be difficult for Roy to pay up without first getting released from jail.
Justice A.K.Sikri, who authored the verdict, said the judgment has already been passed, indicating to Sibal that nothing can be done now, until Sahara chooses to pay up. The judgment said, once Roy is released on bail, whenever that is, he has 18 months to repay his depositors his total liability of Rs. 36, 000 crore.
The bench said, Sahara has to arrange the payment of the total dues in nine equal installments, in 18 months time, from the date of his release. Accordingly, Sahara is now required to pay Rs 3,000 crore every two months. Default of two months will mean re-arrest and a return to jail . The court further refused Roy’s application for parole, but agreed to extend conference room facilities for him inside Tihar, for a period of eight weeks, so that he can negotiate with prospective buyers and find money to pay for his bail.
Roy, a few days back, expressed hope, that he would be out of jail soon and celebrate his birthday, with his workers. With the SC setting tough conditions on his release, Roy and company’s nightmare will only get worse from here on. It has been a steady and dramatic fall for Roy. In his heydays Roy flaunted with brazen arrogance his links with politicians across party lines, his friendship with Bollywood stars and Beauty queens, hosting lavish parties going into crores, and leading a flamboyant lifestyle .
But now, he cuts a lonely figure behind bars and most of his high profile friends have deserted him, leaving him to wage a battle to save his so called, world’s largest Pariwar. The image of Pariwar too has taken a severe beating with staff not getting salaries in time for the last six months. And what’s more is workers committing suicide; a titanic fall for a company which once boasted with a slogan – Hum Hai Sahara, Bharat hai Hamara. ( We are Sahara , India is ours)