The Supreme Court on Friday exempted Sahara group chief Subrata Roy from personal appearance till further orders in a case related to his alleged failure to pay entire dues worth Rs 25,781 crore excluding interest despite being given "several opportunities and indulgence."
The top court, on January 31 last year, had directed Roy and two other directors, Ravi Shankar Dubey and Ashok Roy Choudhary, to personally appear before it to explain why they failed to pay the dues.
Sahara has so far deposited around Rs 20,000 crore in the Sebi-Sahara account which includes principle Rs 15,160 crore and Rs 4,800 crore interest and is liable to pay further Rs 10,621 crore, according to Sebi.
A bench led by Chief Justice SA Bobde took note of the plea of senior advocate Vikas Singh, appearing for Roy, and granted them exemption from personal appearance till further orders. However, it refused Singh's request that the Delhi Police escort, given to Roy, be withdrawn.
Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain, appearing for the Delhi Police, alleged that Roy uses his private guards and does not allow police personnel to accompany him most of the times despite a specific order in this regard.
Sebi also opposed withdrawal of security guards, saying they were deployed at his expenditure to ensure his presence in court and pay back the money.
Since the Bench was hearing the case for the first time it asked the lawyers to provide subject-wise charts of pending applications so that the matter can be decided.
Roy and its two directors are out on parole since May 2016, after spending two years at Delhi's Tihar Jail. Roy and others are in judicial custody since March 4, 2014 for not complying with the apex court's August 31, 2012 and December 5, 2012, orders relating to refund of over Rs 24,029 crore raised from three crore bond investors by two group firms. The parole was first granted to enable Roy to attend the funeral of his mother and since then it has been extended from time to time.