ROC seeks details of Gadkari's role, stake in Purti firms

Weeks after the Corporate Affairs Ministry ordered a discreet inquiry into the books of the company floated by BJP chief Nitin Gadkari -Purti Power & Sugar - the Registrar of Companies (RoC) has found several prima-facie violations of the Companies Act and has sent a notice to the Purti group seeking details of Gadakari's stake and role in the firms.

According to a CNBC-TV18 report, RoC's preliminary inquiry into the private placement that the company undertook between March 2009 and January 2010 found that the company had issued about 1.27 crore shares to over 7,000 people and entities, which may be a breach of Section 67(3) of the Companies Act that set a 50% cap on such private placements.

Reuters

The inquiry also revealed that the Purti Group may have given preference to certain allottees during this period. For instance, Purti had given about 1.5 million shares to two companies -- one of them Ideal Road Builders, which is the company that allegedly gave Purti a large chunk of loan to get the company started.

Another murky deal that questions are being raised about is how the firm Global Safety Vision, with a paid-up capital of just Rs 35,000, could give a loan of Rs 164 crore to Purti.

According to the ROC's inquiry, eight companies, which are also shareholders in Purti Group had given a corporate guarantee to Global Safety Vision. The RoC has sought an explanation regarding this connection and the utilisation of these loans.

CNBC-TV18's Ronojoy Banerjee also spoke to Purti officials who confirmed receiving the ROC notice, but said that ROC cannot conclude the investigation without Purti's responses.