Television

Zee to approach SEBI against Padmalaya promoters

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MUMBAI/NEW DELHI: Zee Telefilms will be seeking market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India's (SEBI) intervention for action against promoter shareholders of Padmalaya.

This relates to the alleged misappropriation of a substantial amount of shares that Padmalaya Enterprises Private Ltd (PEPL) held in Padmalaya Telefilms Ltd (PTL).

"We may write to SEBI and other regulatory authorities for the founder-promoters fraudulent misappropriation of PEPL's 6. 265 million shares in PTL to other lenders," a senior Zee official tells indiantelevision.com.

Padmalaya companies' chairman and managing director GA Seshagiri Rao dismisses Zee's allegations as false claims. "The loans were raised with the full knowledge of Zee. I was only a nominee of Zee. The management control is with them and they have other representatives on the board."

The Zee official, however, has put the charges back on Rao. "Has he brought these matters to the board? These issues were never discussed in the board. Nor were they disclosed in the filings to SEBI and the stock exchanges."

Zee, meanwhile, has issued a circular today to all employees of PEPL and PTL stating "not to be misguided by any rumours emanating from interested quarters."

According to the circular, a copy of which is available with the indiantelevision.com, "Attempts were made by ZTL during the last two months to ensure that those who have done fraudulent acts and deeds shall make good the losses suffered by the stakeholders, including employees. They accepted that their fraudulent acts have resulted in substantial losses and agreed to make good the loss. But they have gone back on their commitments."

Yesterday, Zee had said it would take legal action against Rao and promoter shareholders. ZTL's interest in PTL through a 64 per cent stake buy in holding company Padmalaya Enterprises Private Ltd. stands at the crossroads with these allegations of misappropriation made against Rao and other shareholders. The misappropriation of 6.265 million shares of PTL held by PEPL has brought down Zee's indirect interest in PTL from about 33 per cent to around 13 per cent, according to ZTL.

The circular repeats some of the allegations levelled by ZTL yesterday against those entrusted with managing the two Padmalaya companies saying that "since the time of signing of the shareholders' agreement, ZTL has always entrusted all responsibilities and authorities to Mr. Seshagiri Rao and his other family members."

The chief finance office of Padmalaya, a ZTL nominee, who issued the circular today on behalf of Zee, has also stated that "under the circumstances," he will not be available to "supervise" the financial functions of the (Padmalaya) companies. This decision has also been communicated to Rao, the circular adds.

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