An IIT Bombay undergraduate degree, followed by a Masters in a prestigious university. Membership in several policy-setting bodies, think tanks, research organizations. Spouse, who happens to be a classmate, equally driven. Treated as media darlings as they created algorithms and “helped” the Ministry of Finance in setting policy for India’s financial markets. Impressive. But… (and in such cases, there is always a but)
In order to understand how the premier stock exchange in India operates, the husband-wife team were given time series data of trading activity at the said exchange. This was provided to them purely for academic purposes because they were part of a prestigious Policy making body attached to the Finance Ministry, which in turn is the final authority on all things related to Finance in India. But they turned this into a huge money-making opportunity!
Wife and her sister, who happens to be married to the head of trading of the said Stock Exchange (Conflict of Interest a million times over), formed companies that used the above-given data to come up with strategies that could predict how stocks would behave. These algorithms were then sold for profit (and perhaps a cut of the proceeds) to several brokers and this went for several years when a select few made humongous profits out of this white-collar crime. To ensure the desired outcome, the hardware at the Stock Exchange too was rigged to allow the said brokers first access.
And now, this husband is moving heaven and earth to save his (and her) skin by clinging on, hoping somehow that all this will blow away. His godfather is running from pillar to post, trying to save his own skin and all the other king’s men have been summoned to help this team.
The Prime Minister and the current Finance Minister should go by the facts of the case and not let any interference from any babu, howsoever high he or she is. It is a shame that this husband-wife team has not stepped down from any of their posts and continue to live in la-la land. When a person is named in a CBI-FIR, it behooves this person to set an example of probity for others to follow.
To know who this husband-wife jodi is, search in the series Anatomy of a Crime that appeared in PGurus in Sep-Oct 2017.
 Anatomy of a crime P4 – Who benefited from the HFT scam? Oct 4, 2017, PGurus.com
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