Friday, March 27, 2015

Can FTIL’s Proposed Solution Crack NSEL Logjam?

Often the solution is easy and lies before our eyes, and yet we do not see it. We move mountains and cross oceans, and yet all the while the remedy was lying in plain sight in our own courtyard.

This is what is happening with the  NSEL issue. If all the stakeholders—FTIL, the trading clients, brokers, and the government— join hands, the payment default crisis at NSEL can be speedily resolved. In fact, FTIL’s proposed solution as outlined to the government can heal the wounds of all the stakeholders inflicted by the defaulters on NSEL’s trading platform.

In a manner of speaking, the solution would entail that the pain is evenly distributed. The money trail to the last paisa has been found with the defaulters and they should be held accountable for their actions. So far, without any reason, it is only FTIL that has borne the brunt of the crisis by facing various proceedings which are sub-judice.

The privity of contract of the trading clients is with the brokers. It is brokers which have made multi-times money while transacting on the exchange. It is therefore important that they participate in the settlement process to enable payment to trading clients.

According to Business Standard, published on March 20, Prashant Desai, the Managing Director & CEO of FTIL, said, “FTIL proposes to pay Rs. 500 crore, of which Rs. 180 crore was already paid in 2013, with the brokers contributing equally”.  The proposed solution is without prejudice and is subjected to FTIL shareholder and board approval.

If all the parties concerned agree to implement it with government help, all trading clients with exposure of up to Rs. 1 crore, which are 11, 954 in number, will get at least half their dues as reported in the Business Standard article. The PSUs will receive 100% of their claims.  

Mr. Venkat Chary, the chairman of the FTIL, too had reiterated that “around 94% of trading clients’ claims can be immediately addressed in part or full measure by Rs.1, 000 crore payment.” 

Eleven defaulters have admitted liability of Rs 2,000 crore and high court has issued decrees for Rs 513 crore.

If all parties contribute and come forward to resolve the NSEL issue, then it will be one less problem for the government to solve.  

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