CBI registers case against former NSE CEOs, ex-Mumbai top cop for allegedly phone tapping


The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has registered a case against former National Stock Exchange (NSE) chief executive officers (CEOs) Chitra Ramkrishna and Ravi Narain, former Mumbai police commissioner Sanjay Pandey and others for allegedly tapping the phones of employees of the bourse between 2009 and 2017 in connivance with each other, people familiar with the matter said. Pandey’s premises were among 18 places, including eight in Mumbai, two in Pune, and five in Delhi-National Capital Region, being raided on Friday after the registration of the case.

The people said the First Information Report (FIR) in the case, which is the second against Ramkrishna, has been filed on the orders of the Union home ministry. NSE’s then top brass is alleged to have tapped the phones with the help of Pandey’s iSec Securities firm, said an official, who did not want to be named. It is unclear how many employees were under surveillance and for how many days.

Pandey incorporated iSec Securities in March 2001 and quit as its director in May 2006. His son and mother then took over the company. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) questioned Pandey on Tuesday in its probe into the NSE co-location scam, which is also under CBI’s investigation. Pandey was the Mumbai Police commissioner for four months before he retired on June 30. He also served as Maharashtra’s acting director-general of police.

CBI and ED have been probing the co-location scam since 2018. Several stockbroking companies allegedly got preferential access to the NSE’s server when Ramkrishna was the CEO of the bourse between 2010 and 2015. The access provided them with data faster and allowed them to get “an unfair advantage”.

Ramkrishna was appointed as NSE’s joint managing director in 2009. She took over as managing director and CEO in April 2013 and remained so till 2016. It was during this period that the co-location scam allegedly took place.

The agency arrested Ramkrishna and Anand Subramanian, the former NSE group operating officer, earlier this year. About a dozen brokers face the CBI probe for misusing the co-location facility. The agency is also investigating the roles of officials of NSE and market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India for allegedly giving an unfair advantage to the brokers.

(Except for the headline and the pictorial description, this story has not been edited by THE DEN staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)