Panel under ex-CJI to sell PACL assets to refund investors: SC

New Delhi, Feb. 2 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Tuesday set-up a committee headed by its former chief justice R.M.Lodha to sell the assets of the PACL Ltd to refund the investors Rs.49,000 crore collected through collective investment scheme held illegal by market regulator SEBI.

Having set up the committee, a bench of Justice Anil. R. Dave and Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel directed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to hand over the title deeds of PACL properties to the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).
Indicating that the sale of PACL assets could be through auction route, the bench, however, said that Justice Lodha Committee would take a call on the modalities of sale of assets. The refund of money involves more than five crore investors.
Directing that no court in the country would entertain any plea in respect of the sale of PACL assets, the bench also restrained the PACL from going for any more investments from the public.
The court directed the committee to appoint experts to assists in the sale of land and directed the SEBI to appoint a nodal officer to for investor grievances.
The money to be refunded to the investors was allegedly collected by PACL and Pearls Golden Forest Limited – two companies belonging to Nirmal Singh Bhangoo-managed group – in the name of sale and development of agricultural land.
The Pearls Group chairman-cum-managing and its three directors were arrested on January 8, following an apex court ordered probe in connection with the alleged cheating of Rs.45,000 crore.