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Govt probing Infocomm share issue: FM

March 15, 2005 13:49 IST

Government is looking into the issue of Reliance Infocomm Limited shares to ascertain whether any law has been violated in the allocation of one crore shares to three firms apparently at the rate of one rupee each, Finance Minister P Chidambaram said in the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday.

"We are looking to see if any law has been violated in the allocation of shares. The enquiry is not over. We will continue to look into it," he said responding to supplementaries.

"From the available balance sheets of the three companies, as at 31.3.2004, the price at which the three companies acquired shares in the erstwhile Reliance Infocomm Limited appears to be at Re 1 per share," the minister said during Question Hour.

Chidambaram said so far as complaints against Reliance Industries Limited pertaining to security transactions were concerned, Securities and Exchange Board of India was looking into the matter.

He said if any corruption came to light, then some other authority could do the investigation. "But right now it is Sebi (which is going into it)."

Chidambaram said according to information furnished by the ministry of company affairs, three unlisted companies held shares in an unlisted public limited company -- Reliance Infocomm Limited.

Unlisted companies did not fall under the purview of Sebi as they are not governed by Sebi, he said and added the

Board of Governors of the company was free to allocate shares to anybody. But, if it has violated any guidelines prescribed by Telecom Regulatory Authority, it was for the communication ministry to ascertain.

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