Adani-Hindenburg Row: Supreme Court to Hear SEBI’s Plea for Extension on May 15On May 13, 2023 by Sahitya Shukla
In February 2023, US short-seller Hindenburg Research published a report alleging that the Adani Group,
an Indian multinational conglomerate, had engaged in a number of fraudulent and illegal activities,
including stock manipulation, accounting fraud, and money laundering. The report caused a sharp sell-off in Adani Group stocks, wiping out billions of dollars in market value.
The Adani Group has denied all of the allegations in the Hindenburg report. The company has said that it
is cooperating with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), the Indian securities regulator,
which is conducting an investigation into the matter.
The Adani-Hindenburg row refers to a series of allegations made by the US short seller Hindenburg
Research in a report published on February 14, 2023. The report accused the Adani Group, a
conglomerate led by Gautam Adani, of engaging in a number of fraudulent and manipulative practices,
● Using shell companies to inflate its profits
● Failing to disclose material information to investors
● Engaging in insider trading
● Using its political connections to win government contracts
The report caused a sharp sell-off in Adani Group stocks, wiping out billions of dollars in market value.
The Adani Group has denied all of the allegations, calling them “baseless and defamatory.”
Supreme Court intervention
In March 2023, the Supreme Court of India intervened in the matter and directed the Securities and
Exchange Board of India (SEBI) to investigate the allegations made by Hindenburg Research. SEBI has
been conducting its investigation for the past two months.
The committee, which was headed by former Supreme Court judge Justice Abhay Manohar Sapre,
submitted its report to the Supreme Court on May 12, 2023. The report found that there was prima facie evidence to suggest that the Adani Group had engaged in some of the activities alleged by Hindenburg
On May 12, 2023, the Supreme Court heard a batch of petitions filed by investors who had lost money in
Adani Group stocks. The court also heard a plea filed by SEBI seeking an extension of time to complete
The court has now asked SEBI to submit its report by August 15, 2023. The court will then decide
whether to grant SEBI any further extension of time.
SEBI is also conducting an investigation into the allegations against the Adani Group. The investigation is
ongoing and it is not clear when it will be completed.
In May 2023, SEBI sought a three-month extension to complete its investigation. The Supreme Court has
agreed to give SEBI the extension, but it has asked the regulator to expedite its probe.
Implications of the row
The Adani-Hindenburg row has had a number of implications, both for the Adani Group and for the
Indian economy as a whole.
For the Adani Group, the row has damaged its reputation and raised questions about its corporate
governance practises. The row has also made it more difficult for the group to raise capital from foreign
For the Indian economy, the row has raised concerns about the concentration of economic power in the
hands of a few conglomerates. The row has also highlighted the need for stronger corporate governance
regulations in India.
The Supreme Court’s decision to intervene in the matter is a positive development. It sends a strong
message that the government will not tolerate corporate fraud and abuse.
The court’s decision to ask SEBI to submit its report by August 15, 2023, is also a positive development.
It will allow SEBI to complete its investigation and submit its findings to the court.
The court’s final decision on the matter will be closely watched by investors, businesses, and
policymakers. The decision will have a significant impact on the Adani Group, the Indian economy, and
corporate governance in India.
Possible outcomes of the Supreme Court’s decision
There are a number of possible outcomes of the Supreme Court’s decision in the Adani-Hindenburg row.
The court could:
● Grant SEBI the extension that it has requested. This would allow SEBI to continue its
investigation and to gather more evidence.
● Refuse SEBI’s request for an extension. This would mean that SEBI would have to wrap up its
investigation within a shorter period of time.
● Order a fresh investigation into the Adani-Hindenburg row. This would mean that SEBI’s
investigation would be scrapped and that a new investigation would be conducted by a different
● The Supreme Court’s decision is likely to have a significant impact on the Adani Group and on
the Indian stock market. The outcome of the case will be closely watched by investors and by
businesses across India.
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