‘Hum Adani ke Hain Kaun’: How did agencies fail to investigate Adani scam, asks Congress

Opp members took out a protest march from Parliament House and were attempting to reach Enforcement Directorate's office and hand over a complaint to the probe agency on the Adani scam on March 15, 2023.

New Delhi: The Congress on Thursday alleged that the Adani Group has had a “track record” of share manipulation and asked how the entire range of regulators and investigation agencies failed to investigate such “unnatural share price volatility” of its companies, PTI reported.

The Congress has been persistent on its attack on the government weeks after Adani Group stocks took a beating on the bourses after US-based short seller Hindenburg Research made a litany of allegations, including fraudulent transactions and share-price manipulation.

Posing a set of three questions to Modi as part of the party’s “Hum Adani ke Hain Kaun” series, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh said the stock market capitalisation of the Adani Group soared by 1,000 per cent in three years — from Rs 2 lakh crore in 2019 to more than Rs 20 lakh crore in 2022 — before crashing in 2023.

“This is a very rapid growth rate for any large conglomerate and it is no coincidence that this surge strongly resembled a previous stock market scam in which the Adani Group was also involved,” Ramesh alleged.

“As we pointed out in the February 13, 2023 ‘Hum Adani ke Hain Kaun’, a 2007 SEBI ruling following an investigation into excessive volatility in the shares of Adani Exports (now known as Adani Enterprises) between 1999 and 2001 had found that entities associated with the notorious stock manipulator Ketan Parekh had indulged in ‘manipulative activities such as synchronised trading/circular trading and creation of artificial volume to influence the price in the scrip of Adani’ and that the ‘promoters of Adani Group aided and abetted’ these manipulations,” the Congress leader claimed, as per the PTI report.

Given this track record, how did the entire range of regulators and investigation agencies fail to investigate such “unnatural share price volatility”, Ramesh asked.

Ramesh claimed that the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) of the Ministry of Corporate Affairs had filed a charge sheet in 2012 accusing the Adani Group and Ketan Parekh of making fraudulent gains of Rs 388.11 crore and Rs 151.40 crore respectively by manipulating shares of Adani Exports.

It had also lodged cases of cheating and criminal conspiracy against Gautam Adani and Rajesh Adani, he said.

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