Chitra Ramakrishna, roommate scam and how NSE downplayed a serious case
Chitra Ramkrishna, once known as the most powerful woman in the Indian securities market, has once again made headlines.
However, this time the former chief executive and chief executive of the National Stock Exchange (NSE), is in the news for serious allegations against her.
In its order recently, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) said it was influenced by an unknown ‘yogi’ in the appointment of Anand Subramanian as chief operating officer of NSE Group and adviser to the chief executive. general.
In the 190-page order, Sebi added that she leaked key trade secrets regarding day-to-day operations.
Sebi got a whiff of the irregularities while investigating the NSE co-location controversy in which it was alleged that some brokers received preferential treatment and some NSE officials went hand in hand with them.
During his investigation, Sebi discovered that several e-mails had been exchanged between the head of the NSE, Chitra Ramakrishna, and an unknown person.
In January 2015, a whistleblower wrote to SEBI alleging that a few brokers were able to connect to NSE systems with better hardware specs while engaging in algorithmic trading, which allowed them unfair access and advantage.
She alleged that market manipulation had been taking place for several years at the NSE co-location centre.
He also said that NSE had allowed an unincorporated internet service provider (ISP) to lay fiber optic cables on its premises for a few stockbrokers.
Just a year after these revelations, Ramakrishna resigned as head of NSE.
In 2019, SEBI heavily criticized NSE for alleged failures in high-frequency trading offered through its co-location facility, ordered the exchange to disgorge Rs 624.89 crore and barred it from accessing the funds market for a while. six months.
Sebi found that NSE and its board were aware of these irregularities and misconduct by Ramkrishna, but did not record the matter in the minutes of the meeting and did not submit the irregularities report. to Sebi only after repeated reminders.
Sebi had said that NSE knew that Ramakrishna shared confidential information with a stranger and yet he tried to cover up the matter.
In 2018, Sebi repeatedly asked the NSE for clarification.
The NSE submitted its detailed response along with a forensic investigation report conducted by Ernst & Young (E&Y) in which it was concluded that said unknown person was Subramanian.
The regulator said despite being aware of the irregularities in Subramanian’s appointment, Ravi Narain, the exchange’s former vice chairman, and the NSE did not register the case in the lawsuit. minutes of the board meeting in the name of confidentiality and sensitive information. .
In 2017, two of 14 NSE officials who received show cause notices from Sebi for their alleged involvement in providing unfair access to certain brokers denied the charges.
The irregularities in the colocation facility occurred between 2010 and 2015.
Ravi Narain served as Managing Director and CEO until March 2013. Ramakrishna succeeded Narain as Managing Director and CEO and served until December 2016 before being forced out.
In their responses to SEBI’s show cause notices, both said they were unfamiliar with the technology and took advice from functional managers. They also said they were not involved in the day-to-day operations of the colocation facility.