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Sebi chief riposte to Nilekani’s God claim

'Investors should draw their own conclusions. Whatever we have to do, we are doing. Whatever is the outcome you would know'

By Our Special Correspondent in Mumbai

  • Published 9.11.19, 1:19 AM
  • Updated 9.11.19, 1:19 AM
Ajay Tyagi
Ajay Tyagi (PTI)

Sebi chief Ajay Tyagi on Friday said a probe is on into the Infosys matter and quipped one needs to ask either Nandan Nilekani or God on the IT major chairman’s assertion about even God can’t change the company’s numbers.

Under fire in the wake of whistleblower complaints about alleged accounting lapses at the country’s second largest software exporter, Nilekani had said processes at the company are so strong that even God cannot change the numbers.

“You have to ask him or you can ask God,” Tyagi told reporters when asked about his view on Nilekani's comments.

Speaking on the sidelines of an event organised by industry body CII here, Tyagi said Sebi is probing the matter and that he has nothing to say on the allegations at present.

“Investors should draw their own conclusions. Whatever we have to do, we are doing. Whatever is the outcome you would know,” Tyagi said.

On Wednesday, Nilekani asserted that the company operates with the highest integrity, and that “even God can’t change the numbers of this company”.

On whether any information has been shared with American regulator SEC since Infosys is also listed in the US, Tyagi declined to elaborate saying it is a confidential correspondence between two regulators.

Meanwhile, Tyagi said there is a need to increase the flow of issues in the market and that compliance with minimum shareholding norms by state-run entities would be of help. According to him, 45 of the 91 listed government-controlled entities are not meeting the requirement to have a free float of 25 per cent.

“Such companies need to come forward and increase the visibility in the market and this is something which can be done and we have conveyed this to the government also,” the Sebi chairman said.

Further, Tyagi said not many companies are coming forward to list despite getting approvals from the regulator.

While noting that issues worth over Rs 25 lakh crore are pending, Tyagi said, “After a year the IPO approvals lapse. And I am talking about those PSUs whose approvals are still valid but who have not yet hit the market”.

Infy CFO severance

Infosys on Friday said it, along with some current and former executives, has submitted applications with the Registrar of Companies in the matter related to the severance agreement with former CFO Rajiv Bansal. Infosys said it has applied for compounding “to put this legacy matter to rest”.

Infosys had agreed to pay Bansal a severance amount of Rs 17.38 crore, or 24 months of salary, but the company suspended payments after he got Rs 5 crore as co-founder N. R. Narayana Murthy and others objected to the package as excessive. 

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