Decided on May 24,2018

Ranjan Kr. Gogoi Appellant
The Securities and Exchange Board of India Respondents


ACHINTYA MALLA BUJOR BARUA,J. - (1.) AND ORDER Heard Mr. SK Talukdar, learned counsel for the petitioners. Also heard Dr. A Saraf, learned Senior counsel for the respondent Nos. 5, 6 and 7 as well as Mr. N Islam, learned counsel for respondent Nos.1, 2, 3 and 4.
(2.) Although respondent Nos.8, 9 and 10 were not duly served, but their interest is substantially taken care of by respondent Nos.5, 6 and 7 and further the nature of the order that is proposed to be passed would not be adverse to the said respondents so as to warrant a further delay in the hearing of this matter.
(3.) It is also noticed that this writ petition has been pending since the year 2012 and the various orders passed reflects that inspite of several opportunities being given to the petitioner for taking steps on the said respondents, but no such steps have been taken. The petitioners being 60 in numbers have preferred this writ petition on a common cause that the petitioners 1 to 59 were holding certain shares of M/s. Oil India Ltd., and had engaged the respondent No. 10 as their broker for dealing with such shares. The allegation is that without their due consent, the shares held by the petitioners 1 to 59 were sold off by the respondent No. 10 without due consent of the petitioners. In the aforesaid circumstances, this writ petition has been preferred for a direction to the respondent Security Exchange Board of India (for short, SEBI Act of 1992) to invoke its powers under Section 11 and 15 of the SEBI Act of 1992 and cause an enquiry and investigation in the matter whereby loss was caused to the petitioners due to fraudulent and unfair trade practice carried on by the respondents Reliance Securities Ltd. It is stated that the respondent No. 10 who was entrusted to deal with the shares of the petitioners was in fact a sub broker of the Reliance Securities Ltd., and, therefore, claim of the petitioners is in the nature of vicarious liability of the Reliance Securities Ltd. Further relief that is sought for is that the respondent Reliance Securities Ltd., be directed to pay a penalty of 25 crores for having indulged in a fraudulent and unfair trade practice and such relief is being sought under Section 15HA of the SEBI Act of 1992. The respondent Reliance Securities Ltd., entered appearance and took a stand that the relief claimed by the writ petitioners are untenable under the provisions of SEBI Act of 1992. A further stand has been taken that the respondent No. 10 did not hold any shares on behalf of the 60 petitioners, and, therefore, he has no locus standi to be a petitioner and secondly, the affidavit accompanying the writ petition having been sworn by the petitioner No. 60, it is technically defective and not liable to be entertained in the present form. A stand has also been taken by the respondent, Reliance Securities Ltd., that under the agreements between the investors and the brokers as well as the bye-laws of the Bombay Stock Exchange and National Stock Exchange there is a clause for arbitration and from such point of view also, the writ petition is not maintainable.;

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