Former Sebi Chief G N Bajpai had an opportunity to work with NDA and UPA governments both in his tenure as Sebi chairman between 2002 and 2005. On asking a key difference in the way NDA and UPA governments functioned, Bajpai pointed out that NDA was quick to process decisions while UPA government took its own time. "The Sebi Amendment Bill was a serious challenge in my tenure. Under UPA, the decision-making process took its own time, while under NDA, the Bill got amended in no time," says Bajpai.
Bajpai was speaking at the launch event of his book 'A Game Changer's Memoir' held on Monday in New Delhi. In his book, Bajpai has 'recounted the defining moments of his tenure'. In a panel discussion, moderated by A K Bhattacharya, editorial director at Business Standard, Bajpai emphasised on establishing a central listing authority, an 'unfinished task' of his tenure, to manage the initial public offerings (IPOs).
"In India, we have multiple exchanges, which earn revenues when an IPO gets listed. So, there is always some conflict of interests. Therefore, there has to be a standard procedure for all the exchanges that leaves no scope for conflict of interests and brings about uniformity in the listing requirements being framed by individual exchanges," he explains.
Bajpai took charge of Sebi at a time when stock market was recovering from the shock Ketan Parekh scam had caused among retail and institutional investors. Speaking highly of Bajpai, M S Sahoo, chairperson, Insolvency and Bankruptcy Board of India, mentions that Bajpai banned Parekh from the stock market for 14 years. It was a stringent punishment. His order was challenged in Supreme Court, but SC upheld his decision," he says.
"He also motivated people to work for Sebi at a time when morale was extremely down post Ketan Parekh scam," Sahoo adds. Shubhashis Gangopadhyay, research director, India Development Foundation says Bajpai's biggest achievement is the fact that we have not had any scam since then. "While the credit should also go to successive Sebi chiefs, but Bajpai laid down a strong framework during his tenure," he points out.
Puneet Dalmia - Managing Director Dalmia Cement Bharat noted what he did on rolling settlement was path-breaking. Bajpai changed the T+5 cycle to T+2, and thus reduced the risk by half," he says.