On January 25, 2022, the Securities and Exchange Board of India SEBI (Prohibition of Fraudulent and Unfair Trade Practices relating to Securities Market) (Amendment) Regulations, 2022 to further amend the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Prohibition of Fraudulent and Unfair Trade Practices relating to Securities Market) Regulations, 2003.
Key Amendments in the SEBI (Prohibition of Fraudulent and Unfair Trade Practices relating to Securities Market) Regulations, 2003:
- In Regulation 6, the period of one month for keeping custody of any books, registers, other documents has been removed. The amendment now provides:
” to keep in his custody any books, registers, other documents and record produced under this regulation for a maximum period of six months”
- In Regulation 6 the following new clauses shall be inserted. By way insertion, 4 new powers have been added in Regulation 6 which shall be available to the Investigating Authority to conduct the investigation.
“(7) to call for information and record from any person including any bank or any other authority or board or corporation established or constituted by or under any Central, State or Provincial Act in respect of any transaction in securities which are under investigation;
(8) to make an application to the Judge of the designated court in Mumbai as notified by the Central Government for an order for the seizure of any books, registers, other documents and record, if in the course of investigation, the Investigating Authority has reasonable ground to believe that such books, registers, other documents and record of, or relating to, any intermediary or any person associated with securities market in any manner
may be destroyed, mutilated, altered, falsified or secreted;
(9) to keep in his custody the books, registers, other documents and record seized under these regulations for such period not later than the conclusion of the investigation as he considers necessary and thereafter to return the same to the person, the company or the other body corporate, or, as the case may be, to the managing director or the manager or any other person from whose custody or power they were seized:
Provided that the Investigating Authority may, before returning such books, registers, other documents and record as aforesaid, place identification marks on them or any part thereof;
(10) save as otherwise provided in this regulation, every search or seizure made under this regulation shall be carried out in accordance with the provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974) relating to searches or seizures made under that Code.”
Regulation 11(2) has been modified to remove the requirement of press release where earlier the Board was required to issue a press release in respect of any final order passed under sub-regulation (1) in at least two newspapers of which one shall have nationwide circulation and also to put the order on the website of the Board.
Regulation 11A has been modified to include the manner of service of summons and notices issued by the Board.
“Manner of service of summons and notices issued by the Board.
11A. (1) A summons or notice issued by the Board under these regulations shall be served on the person through any of the following modes, namely—
(a) by delivering or tendering it to that person or his duly authorised agent; or
(b) by sending it to the person by fax or electronic mail or electronic instant messaging services along with electronic mail or by courier or speed post or registered post:
Provided that the courier or speed post or registered post shall be sent to the address of his place of residence or his last known place of residence or the place where he carried on, or last carried on, business or personally works, or last worked, for gain, with acknowledgment due:
Provided further that a summons or notice sent by fax shall bear a note that the same is being sent by fax and in case the document contains annexure, the number of pages being sent shall also be mentioned:
Provided further that a summons or notice sent through electronic mail or electronic instant messaging services along with electronic mail shall be digitally signed by the competent authority and bouncing of the electronic mail shall not constitute valid service.
(2) In case of failure to serve a summons or notice through any one of the modes provided under sub-regulation (1), the summons or notice may be affixed on the outer door or some other conspicuous part of the premises in which the person resides or is known to have last resided, or carried on business or personally works, or last worked, for gain and a written report thereof shall be prepared in the presence of two witnesses.
(3) In case of failure to affix the summons or notice on the outer door as provided under sub- regulation (2), the summons or notice shall be published in at least two newspapers, one of which shall be in an English daily newspaper having nationwide circulation and another shall be in a newspaper having wide circulation published in the language of the region where that person was last known to have resided or carried on business or personally worked for gain.