No bail for ex-stock exchange official
A Delhi court on Thursday dismissed the bail application by National Stock Exchange’s (NSE) former group operating officer (GOO) Anand Subramanian in the co-location scam case. Opposing the bail plea, CBI reiterated that Anand was impersonated as ‘Himalayan Yogi’. Special Judge Sanjeev Aggarwal passed the order after hearing counsels for the CBI and Subramanian, who is presently in judicial custody. NSE former MD and CEO Chitra Ramkrishna is also in prison from March 14.
The former GOO was arrested by the CBI on February 24 and was remanded to custodial interrogation. He was sent to 14-day judicial custody on March 9. The CBI counsel said Subramanian, who impersonated as the “Himalayan Yogi” to influence NSE’s former MD and CEO Chitra Ramkrishna and remained evasive during interrogation, was a flight risk and should not be granted bail. Subramanian’s lawyer had sought his release on bail on the ground that he was not named in the FIR, he had no role in the NSE co-location facility while specifically denying the allegation that he was the “Himalayan Yogi” who allegedly influenced Ramkrishna’s decision making.
On March 9, the court had pulled up the CBI for the tardy investigation in the case, saying that the magnitude of the case “will be big” and the reputation of the country was at stake. FIR in the NSE co-location scam was registered in 2018 for the alleged commission of offences under sections 204 (destruction of document or electronic evidence) and 120B (conspiracy) of the Indian Penal Code as well as the violation of the provisions of the Information Technology Act and Prevention of Corruption Act.
In the co-location facility offered by the NSE, brokers could place their servers within the stock exchange premises giving them faster access to the markets. It is alleged by the investigating agency that some brokers in connivance with insiders abused the algorithm and the co-location facility to make windfall profits.
The CBI had alleged that Chitra Ramkrishna, with Anand Subramanian, abused her official position as the MD of NSE and got him appointed as her Chief Strategic Advisor/ Consultant by creating this post of Chief Strategic Advisor to accommodate and appoint him bypassing the prescribed due procedures at NSE.
CBI had already questioned NSE former MD Ravi Narain. It is learned that CBI is planning to question senior officers of SEBI and former Finance Ministry officials like K P Krishnan, who were in top positions during the Co-Location Scam period when P Chidambaram was Finance Minister.
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