Criminal case filed in Calcutta HC against 2 ex IAS officers, including former SEBI chairman for perjury

Criminal Case filed in Calcutta HC against 2 ex IAS officers including former SEBI chairman for perjury

In a significant legal move, UpHealth Holdings, Inc. has taken a decisive step to address allegations of perjury and related offences by applying Section 340 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, on 12 June 2024. This application seeks to initiate an inquiry against a group of individuals and entities, including former SEBI Chairman M. Damodaran, Glocal Healthcare Systems Private Limited, Dr. Syed Sabahat Azim, Ms. Richa Sana Azim, Mr. Gautam Chowdhury, and Kimberlite Social Infra Private Limited. The offences specified in Section 195(1)(b) of the law are at the heart of these allegations.

The filing of this application follows a series of events that transpired during the legal proceedings related to an arbitral award issued by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). The award was in connection with a breach of a Share Purchase Agreement between UpHealth Holdings Inc. and Glocal Healthcare Systems Private Limited. The Calcutta High Court had instructed the respondents to disclose their assets, liabilities, and pending litigations as part of these proceedings.

It was during these disclosures that Mr. M. Damodaran claimed absence from a pivotal meeting on 26 September 2022, which had implications for UpHealth’s rights. However, the minutes of this meeting, which had been withheld for two years, were produced only after Mr. Damodaran’s request. This led the Calcutta High Court to comment on the “lack of bonafides and ill motive” in the delay of providing this critical information.

Regarding a recent order supposedly passed by the Barasat court order, news articles reported that a charge sheet was filed against UpHealth officials, despite a Calcutta High Court order preventing coercive action. The Barasat Court’s order, dated 29 May 2024, was allegedly passed without informing UpHealth or the Calcutta High Court, and during a court vacation. UpHealth filed a supplementary affidavit in the Calcutta High Court, highlighting the inconsistency of the Barasat Court’s actions with the High Court’s previous orders. The Calcutta High Court permitted UpHealth to file an appropriate document regarding these developments.

In the perjury matter, the Calcutta High Court has earlier directed Glocal Healthcare Systems Private Limited and others to file an affidavit of their assets, liabilities, and pending litigations concerning an International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) arbitral award. Mr. M. Damodaran (ex-SEBI Chief) claimed not to have been present at a crucial meeting where UpHealth’s rights were defeated, but minutes of the meeting were produced only after he requested them, raising suspicions of fabrication. Based on these observations and other suspicious circumstances, UpHealth filed an application under Section 340 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, to initiate an inquiry into perjury and related offences.

Given the court’s observations and other suspicious circumstances surrounding the case, UpHealth Holdings Inc. has formed a reasonable belief that the minutes of the meeting in question are ante-dated and fabricated. This belief has prompted the filing of the application for an inquiry into perjury and other related offences.

UpHealth Holdings, Inc. remains steadfast in its commitment to upholding the principles of justice and integrity in all legal matters. The company looks forward to the court’s consideration of the application and the subsequent inquiry into the allegations made against the parties.

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