Mehul Choksi, Prime Securities amongst 26 debarred from stock markets
Market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and bourses have debarred Gitanjali Gems’ promoter Mehul Choksi and other 25 entities in relation with suspected market manoeuvring. This follows an investigation carried out by SEBI and National Stock Exchange (NSE) into the trading activities of Prime Broking Co (India) Ltd and trading in Gitanjali Gems by these entities. In a similar circular issued; NSE, BSE and MCX-SX said, "Pursuant to the decision of SEBI and NSE which are investigating the trading activity of Prime Broking Company (India) Ltd and trading in Gitanjali Gems Ltd by set of clients, Unique Client Code (UCC) in respect of 26 entities/ persons are disabled from trading with immediate effect for a period of 6 months or till conclusion of investigation by NSE, whichever is earlier". The list of entities barred from the stock markets by SEBI and the bourses includes Albers Diamonds Private Limited, Avtar Gems Private Limited, CLT Investments Pvt Ltd, CSA Holding Private Limited, Facet Electronic & Electrical Private Limited, Fender Mercantile Private Limited, Jaiwanti Mercantiles Pvt Limited, Jinal Infratech Private Limited, Jinal Mercantile Private Limited, Magnifique Gems Private Limited, Manoj Madhav Vankar, Mehul Choksi, Pinky Agro Foods Private Limited, Prime Research And Advisory Ltd, Prime Securities Ltd, Primesec Investments Limited, Rhoda Infrastructure Private Limited, Rishabh Technomarine Private Limited, Sadhiv Mercantile Private Limited, Sancheti Properties Private Limited, Sarvin Mercantile Pvt Ltd, Shraddha Garments Private Limited, Sneaking Infrastructure Private Limited, Somerset Infrastructure Private Limited, Trusha Infrastructure Pvt Ltd and Vankars Gems & Jewelleries Private Limited. All these 26 entities are suspected to be linked to Prime Broking. As of March 2013, Mehul Choksi, Managing Director of Gitanjali Gems held 51.62 per cent stake, while Prome Broking had 1.85per cent stake in the company. Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) and Bennett Coleman and Company Ltd, the publisher of Times of India hold 4.36 per cent and 1.73 per cent stake, respectively in Gitanjali Gems. While the investigations are progressing, the stock exchanges - including NSE, BSE and MCX-SX - decided to suspend 'unique client codes' of the 26 entities from trading for a period of six months, or till the conclusion of the probe, whichever is earlier, they said in similar circulars. Shares of Gitanjali Gems have been incessantly falling over the last month, locked in lower circuit on most days. It has fallen 75 per cent from Rs. 550 on June 18th to Rs. 109.85 yesterday.