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Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Journalist Sucheta Dalal quizzed by ED in NSE co-location scam

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on has recorded the statement of journalist Sucheta Dalal in connection with the National Stock Exchange (NSE) co-location scam. She was summoned to join the probe after her name cropped up during the course of investigation.

She was questioned on Saturday at length in ED’s Delhi-based headquarters. She replied all the answers asked to her by the probe agency. No ED official, however, was available to comment on the matter.

Dalal said that she was summoned and then she joined the ED’s probe in NSE’s co-location scam.

“Just before the New Delhi meeting, I was told that they wanted to record my statement before Pushpal Paul. On asking Abhinav Khare, the SP CBI, he had told me that it was about ‘Ken Fong’. This is the name used by the whistle-blower.

Indeed, most of the questions asked by the the CBI were about Ken Fong’s four letters. I had carried all the four letters posted by Ken Fong to me from two different countries and showed the CBI copies of my e-mails to SEBI. I was asked if I knew who Ken Fong was. I do not know who he is and I said so emphatically. I was also asked about the process which we followed before writing the article and the decision to publish it. And whether I had asked to visit the NSE before writing the article,” Dalal said in her statement.

She was asked if she knew Sanjay Pandey, the former Commissioner of Police, whose firm, iSec Services Pvt Ltd is under the scanner, for which she replied in positive. But she said that she had nothing to do with his business.

She was also asked if she knew Ravi Narain, the former Managing Director of the NSE. Dalal said that she knew him. She told the investigators that she was unable to recall whether she introduced Pandey to Narain.

“I said that I did not see why NSE or Ravi Narain would need a recommendation from me, when the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) had asked Pandey to investigate the National Securities Depository Ltd (NSDL) in 2005. NSDL is a subsidiary of NSE. Later, the NSE itself had asked him to be part of an investigation committee with regard to a trading glitch,” she had said.

(The story has been published via a syndicated feed with a modified headline)

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