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21 October 2016

SC serves notice on state, centre to probe cow vigilantism: “A number of PILs were filed by political leaders and activists in High Courts across the states and in Supreme Court demanding strong action against the cow vigilantes. One such PIL was filed by Congress leader Tehseen S Poonawalla in Supreme Court in August this year.”– Indian Express

Clifford Chance to test applicants with video game: Details not disclosed, but “… the game tests the tenacity and perseverance of potential trainees, as well as how they respond under pressure…  The video game is expected to be rolled out to trainee candidates next year if the trial is a success. It will run alongside the firm’s existing psychometric tests.” – Lawyer2b (requires free registration to read in full)

Sahara tells SC it will deposit Rs 200 cr: “The hearing has been advanced on the request of the Sahara Group after its senior counsel Kapil Sibal made a mention on Thursday before the bench of Justice Anil R. Dave and Justice A.M. Khanwilkar… Seeking that the hearing be advanced from October 24 to October 21, Mr Sibal told the court that Rs. 200 crore that the Sahara Group was to deposit by October 23 would be deposited on Friday.” –  NDTV

Could the CCI throw a spanner into the plans of Flipkart, Amazon, Ola, Uber and MakeMyTrip? – “The point is not that webcompanies have engaged in unfair practices. On the contrary, in the race for acquiring customers, they have slashed prices to an extent that consumers have never had it so good. Still, the digital business as a whole and some Internet companies have become big enough and important enough to warrant the CCI’s attention. Particularly, if there are more M&As, as is likely. ‘The argument that online business is still nascent and can therefore be ignored may not hold water in every sector. It’s growing very fast and many sectors are touched by it. So, at some point, the CCI may soon look at Internet businesses closely,’ said Avimukt Dar, partner, IndusLaw, a law firm.” – Mint

How lax IP laws fuel an open source-ish part of the Shenzhen economic miracle #MakeInChina: “The shanzhai era in consumer electronics gradually faded as incomes rose and brand-name smartphones became more affordable. But it enforced a culture of knowledge-sharing among manufacturers, wherein no single product design is sacred. Lindtner compares the culture of Shenzhen’s manufacturing ecosystem to the open-source movement among software developers. Much like how programmers will freely share code for others to improve upon, Shenzhen manufacturers now see hardware and product design as something that can be borrowed freely and altered. Success in business comes down to speed and execution, not necessarily originality.” – Quartz

How a court case and circumstances conspired to help MakeMyTrip and Ibibo find each other: “Then, as luck would have it, the service tax case in early January brought Kalra, his team and Ibibo’s co-founder Kashyap together. The two were fighting for the same cause, and against the Director General of Central Excise Intelligence that had forced the online travel firms to pay service tax that it claimed they owed, on risk of arrest. (Indeed, one MakeMyTrip executive was arrested).” - Mint

11 July 2016

In a relief to Sahara Group chief Subrata Roy, the Supreme Court today extended his parole till 3 August, 2016.

28 April 2016

The Supreme Court on Wednesday said the possibility of Sahara chief Subrata Roy’s release from jail - having been incarcerated for more than two years now - would depend on the outcome of the first round of auction of Sahara’s assets by market regulator the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).

04 March 2016

Today, Sahara’s Subrata Roy has spent two years in jail for contempt of court, reports Mint , in an in-depth retrospective of the case by Shreeja Sen.

Roy has written a book, reportedly found some peace and managed to repay Rs 4,000 crore of the 10,000 the Supreme Court required him to give back to the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). The next hearing in the case is on 29 March.

19 June 2015

The Supreme Court on Friday gave 18 months to Sahara to repay Rs.36,000 crore of the investors money which its two companies, SIRECL and SHFCL, had collected in 2007-08 through OFCDs.

25 March 2015

The Hindu reported:

The Supreme Court on Monday granted three more months to the Sahara group to sell its offshore properties to raise the Rs 10,000 crore required to secure the release of its chief Subrata Roy on bail. The court said it was satisfied with the company’s latest proposal and would allow it to proceed further.

“Prima facie, we are satisfied that the proposal appears to be a serious effort and we allow it to pursue it further,” said the court.

Senior counsel Kapil Sibal appeared for Roy, and had secured a “final chance" for the Sahara boss to raise the money by selling the company’s properties. Roy has been jailed for one year now for contempt by violating an order from SEBI to repay investors.

04 March 2015

Sahara boss Subrata Roy has been in jail now for a year on the orders of the Supreme Court, without significant progress on recovering money owed by Sahara, nor on tracing more than 30 million investors, reported Mint in a comprehensive summary and infographic on the story so far.

06 February 2015

Sahara’s deal with Mirach Capital Group to borrow $2bn to bail out the group’s supremo Subrata Roy - jailed by the Supreme Court for contempt of court since nearly a year - might be falling apart after a Reuters exclusive yesterday revealed that a Bank of America guarantee letter backing the loan had been forged.

This is likely to leave Roy unable to scrape together enough money to meet the mammoth bail amount, after a series of senior counsel have failed to get him out.

Sahara issued a statement that the letter had been forged and that the company felt “cheated in such an adverse environment against us”, strongly condemned “such inhuman conduct of [Mirach]” and that “Sahara will not spare them” in taking up “suitable legal proceedings”, reported Mint in a detailed story.

Update: Mirach has denied that it forged any guarantee documents, reported PTI

01 August 2014

According to the Times of India, Senior counsel Harish Salve has been the latest lawyer to have been instructed to appear for Sahara boss Subrata Roy, who continues to be locked up in Tihar Jail for contempt of court.

Salve’s first act as counsel was to accept the offer of a bigger cell for Roy - “a big conference room with attached bathroom and also an annexe in Tihar complex that is safe and secure from security point of view” – in order to arrange for the sale of big hotel properties in London and New York owned by the Sahara group to meet the Supreme Court’s stipulated now Rs 10,000 crore quasi-bail, in order to meet Sebi’s order to repay Rs 24,000 crore to investors.

Journalist @JaskiratSB tweeted: “Amongst facilities that could possibly be provided to [Roy] in jail: 2 secretarial staff, wifi, video conferencing + laptops, printers… Sahara to pay for facilities of course. As mentioned in court. But no final call yet.”

“Harish Salve completes a long list of legal luminaries representing Subrata Roy,” commented @SandipGhose on Twitter, referring to the roster of senior counsel who have appeared and failed to get Roy any relief, including Ram Jethmalani, Fali Nariman, Gopal Subramanium, KTS Tulsi, Abhishek Manu SInghvi, PH Parekh, Aryama Sundaram and others.

20 May 2014

Supreme Court justices TS Thakur and AK Sikri told the Sahara Group after a two hour hearing that they would have to pay Rs 10,000 crore to get its boss Subrata Roy and two directors released from jail.

The judges, who replaced the previous bench of justices KS Radharkrishnan and JS Khehar amid unprecedented controversy, said: "You come with a specific proposal and not cast your net so wide, stalemate will not help anybody, including investors. Come with a specific, logical and acceptable proposal." [IANS]

They also responded to Sahara's offer, represented by senior counsel Rajiv Dhawan and Abhishek Manu Singhvi, that a refund of Rs 17,000 crore had been made to investors in cash, saying: "What business you [Sahara] have? How did you generate Rs.20,000 crore overnight? You must have deposited the money in a bank or the money was stacked somewhere... Was it somewhere in a locker or in gunny bags stacked in some corner?" Sahara is now considering selling its foreign hotels to get the money, reported Reuters.

17 May 2014

Supreme Court justices TS Thakur and AK Sikri will be hearing the controversial Sahara case on 19 May after Justice KS Radhakrishnan retired and Justice JS Khehar recused himself and said he wanted nothing to do with any Sahara matters in future. Radhakrishnan had professed to have faced "unimaginable pressured and tension" in the case. [PTI]