Security markets regulator Sebi has prohibited Bollywood singer Sonu Nigam from selling and transferring 54-acre agricultural land at Pinglas village in Raigad district of Maharashtra, which he had purchased from the crisis-hit PACL Group.
The Securities and Exchanges Board of India (Sebi) has put several restrictions on Pearls Agrotech Corporation Ltd (PACL), which collected over Rs 60,000 crore from investors by means of illegal investment schemes over a period of 18 years.
The group is not allowed to sell or transfer any of its assets. The Sebi order said that Nigam is "prohibited from disposing, transferring, alienating or charging" the 54-acre agricultural land.
The PACL Committee, entrusted to sell properties of PACL and use the sale proceeds to refund the investors, had received a letter in April 2018 from the Jan Kalyan Trust, informing about the sale deed made and registered on January 15, 2018 in the name of Sonu Agamkumar Nigam for agricultural land situated in Pingalas village in Raigarh district.
The letter further mentioned that the said property is of a sister concern of PACL Ltd -- Wital See Marketing Ltd -- and at the time of purchase, the property payment was made to PACL Ltd.
PACL in May 2018 had written to the PACL Committee, saying that 99 per cent of share capital of Wital See Marketing Ltd is controlled by 21 associate companies of PACL. As it shows that Wittal See Marketing is an associate company of PACL, the committee has directed that the properties should be attached by Sebi.
Sebi in its order dated March 9 also asked Wital See Marketing to furnish complete details of movable and immovable properties held by them within two weeks.
In December 2015, the regulator had ordered attachment of all assets of PACL and its nine promoters and directors for their failure to refund the money due to investors. Sebi had asked PACL and its promoters to refund the money to the investors in 2014.