Fortis: Sebi probes insider trading violation, other regulatory lapses
New Delhi: Regulator Sebi is probing suspected insider trading by some institutional investors and other regulatory lapses at Fortis Healthcare amid a takeover battle and boardroom upheaval at the hospital chain, officials said.
Apart from the Sebi probe that also includes an investigation into suspected disclosure lapses, the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) and registrar of companies are also looking into alleged financial irregularities at Fortis and other promoter group entities including Religare, they added.
Fortis is in the midst of a heated takeover battle with five entities bidding for the company along with a upheaval at the boardroom, wherein several directors have been stepping down.
There were five suitors in the race for Fortis, including TPG-Manipal combine, Malaysia's IHH Healthcare and KKR-backed Radiant Life Care, which gave binding offers. However, China's Fosun Healthcare did not make a binding bid for the company.
Besides, three directors have already resigned ahead of a shareholder vote on Tuesday to decide their future.
The Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) had first begun the investigation in February following reports that financial irregularities emerged at Fortis. The company was asked to furnish information and documents sought by the regulator.
The development came against the backdrop of reports that Fortis' promoters -Malvinder Singh and Shivinder Singh - took at least USD 78 million (Rs 550 crore) out of the company without any board approval about a year ago.