What is Sahara scam, why TMC is linking BJP chief Amit Shah with it: Explained

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The Trinamool Congress on Monday staged a protest at the gate of the Parliament building demanding BJP president Amit Shah should be named in the Sahara scam and also raised the issue in the Rajya Sabha.

File photo

What is TMC's charge?

  • TMC members alleged that a red diary of Subrata Roy recovered during CBI raid at Sahara's office in November also has the name of BJP chief Amit Shah among others. 
  • Trinamool member Derek O'Brien demanded a discussion over the issue in Rajya Sabha. 
  • When the TMC members were not allowed to do so, they protested at Parliament gate and flashed symbolic red diaries with Sahara written on them. 
  • TMC MP Sudeep Bandhopadhyay said, "In a raid by CBI, from Sahara's office a red diary was recovered in which Amit Shah's name is mentioned."

Who is Subrata Roy Sahara?

  • Subrata Roy is founder-chairman of Sahara Group.
  • He started with capital of Rs 2,000 in the late 1970s and eventually built his company into a giant.
  • According to its website, it has assets currently of more than $11 billion or Rs 68,000 crore.
  • Roy was arrested on February 28 in connection fraud and cheating case, and still behind bars.

What is BJP saying?

  • The BJP said that the TMC was making allegations for political gains.
  • The party said there is no truth in allegations and that no diary was recovered in CBI raid.
  • It also said the party is disturbed by the successful rally that was held by Amit Shah in Bengal on Sunday.

What is Sahara scam?

  • The case is about optional fully convertible debentures that two of Sahara Group's unlisted companies - Sahara India Real Estate and Sahara India Housing Investment - issued during 2008-2011. 
  • The debentures garnered Rs 17,400 crore from 30 million investors.
  • The collection was not in compliance with the requirements applicable to the public offerings of securities. 
  • SEBI ruled an order on 23 June 2011 directing the Sahara Chief and the two companies to refund the money with interest to the investors.
  • Following this, Sahara group took the matter with Securities Appellate Tribunal (SAT). 
  • But SAT held the Sebi findings to be correct.
  • Then, Sahara group approached the Supreme Court in August 2012.
  • During the hearing, the apex court asked the group to repay an amount of over Rs 24,000 crore to Sebi within 90 days. 
  • But, suddenly Sahara said it had repaid most of the money over the last one year and an amount of just over Rs 5,000 crore was pending.
  • SC directs Subrata Roy to appear personally. But, when he failed to appear before it, the apex court issued non-bailable warrant.
  • Subrata Roy was later arrested by the Lucknow police and is in police custody.
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