National Stock Exchange
This is a collection of articles archived for the excellence of their content.
National Stock Exchange’s NIFTY 50, 1996-2021
Rank in the world
January 20, 2022: The Times of India
MUMBAI: For the third consecutive year, India's leading exchange NSE has been ranked as the world's top derivatives trading platform, ahead of global giants like Chicago, Nasdaq and B3 of Brazil.
Data from Futures Industry Association (FIA), a global derivatives trade body showed that the NSE was ranked the largest exchange in the equity as well as the currency derivatives segments by number of contracts traded in 2021.
Under a different league table, in terms of the number of trades in the cash equities segment, the NSE was the fourth largest bourse in the world, data for 2021 by World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) showed.
During 2021, 1,726 crore contracts were traded on the NSE, compared to 876 crore on B3 (of Brazil) and 494 crore on Chicago Mercantile Exchange group's bourses, 329 crore on Nasdaq group's exchanges and 310 crore on Chicago Board of Exchange, FIA data showed.
In 10 years, average daily turnover in the equity derivatives segment of the NSE increased 4.2 times, from Rs 33,305 crore in 2011 to Rs 1.4 lakh crore in 2021, the exchange said. In the same period, cash market average daily turnover increased 6.2 times, from Rs 11,187 crore in 2011 to Rs 69,644 crore in 2021.
The Co-location scam
Partha Sinha, May 1, 2019: The Times of India
Sebi fines NSE ₹1,100cr, bans 2 ex-MDs in brokers’ scam
3 Brokers, Former FinMin Official Also Barred
Market regulator Sebi asked the National Stock Exchange, the largest bourse in India, to pay about Rs 1,100 crore for favouring a few brokers to make illegal gains by using unauthorised trading software, networks and servers in the same room where the exchange’s main trading servers were located. Sebi also banned Ravi Narain and Chitra Ramkrishna, both former MDs of the exchange, from the market for five years each and also asked them to disgorge part of their salaries for the years when NSE had demonstrated favouritism to three brokers — OPG Securities, GKN Securities and Way2Wealth Securities — over all other brokers.
The regulator also asked NSE not to introduce any new derivatives contracts for the next six months. Sebi, through five different orders, also banned the three brokers from the market for up to five years and asked them to disgorge illegal gains and interest on the same, aggregating about Rs 51 crore.
Sebi also banned Ajay Shah, a former finance ministry official and a professor of economics, from associating with any listed company for two years. Shah had used confidential trading data from NSE for personal benefits. Several other people and software vendors who played crucial roles in facilitating the brokers to make illegal gains have also been either banned or fined by Sebi. While Narain had resigned as MD of NSE in May 2013 and took over as its vice-chairman, Ramkrishna took over as MD.
NSE’s preferential treatment to the three brokers for access to its trading servers, called co-location of servers scam or co-lo scam, continued between 2011 and 2014.
‘Orders won’t impact trading’
The illegal operation also involved putting up optical fibre networks within NSE’s premises by unauthorised vendors which were used to access the exchange’s servers.
For its role in the scam, Sebi also banned NSE from the stock market for six months, meaning the exchange cannot go for its IPO, which has been stalled for years on regulatory directions. An NSE spokesperson said that the exchange was in the process of examining Sebi’s order and will take appropriate steps as may be legally advised. Narain and Ramkrishna did not reply to TOI’s calls and messages for their comments.
According to NSE MD Vikram Limaye, the orders will not impact regular trading on NSE and “the trust on NSE and the Indian markets for all investors is rock solid”.
In the order, Sebi’s whole time member G Mahalingam noted that it was established beyond doubt that NSE had not exercised the requisite due diligence while putting in place the TBT architecture (a specialised trading software process). According to Mahalingam, “NSE being a market infrastructure institution cannot be treated at par with other market intermediaries or participants as it derives its power to act as a stock exchange from the recognition granted to it.”
In its order, Sebi asked NSE to pay Rs 625 crore and 12% interest from April 1, 2014 for its role in the co-location scam. It also directed NSE to pay Rs 62.6 crore and 12% interest from September 11, 2015. The fine has to be paid within 45 days from the date of the order. It also asked OPG Securities to pay Rs 15.6 crore, Way2Wealth Rs 15.34 crore and GKN Securities Rs 4.9 crore penalty. These three brokers will also pay 12% interest for four to five years on the amount of penalty.
Sebi also penalised current and former NSE officials Ravi Varanasi, Suprabhat Lala, Subramanian Anand, Nagendra Kumar SRVS, Deviprasad Singh, and officials at the three broking houses.
The yogi and the MD
February 12, 2022: The Times of India
NEW DELHI: Chitra Ramkrishna, the former MD and CEO of NSE, was steered by a 'yogi' dwelling in the Himalayan ranges in the appointment of Anand Subramanian as the exchange's group operating officer and advisor to MD, according to a Sebi order. Further, Ramkrishna gave "frequent, arbitrary and disproportionate" increase in compensation to Subramanian when there was no evidence of any performance evaluation being done for him and nor was there any evidence to satisfy the rating of A+ given to him for giving such high increment.
Apart from this, Ramkrishna had shared certain internal confidential information including financial and business plans of NSE, dividend scenario, financial results with the yogi and even consulted him over the performance appraisals of the exchange's employees.
This was revealed by Sebi in its final order passed against Ramkrishna and others.
Ramkrishna, who was the managing director and CEO of NSE from April 2013 to December 2016, referred the yogi as "Sironmani" and the yogi is a spiritual force who has been guiding her for the past 20 years on personal and professional matters.
The unknown person or yogi according to Ramkrishna was a "spiritual force that could manifest itself anywhere it wanted and did not have any physical or locational co-ordinates and largely dwelt in the Himalayan range".
In its 190-page order, Sebi found that the yogi guided her to appoint Subramanian, who was delegated substantial power of management akin to the powers granted to MD and CEO.
Subramanian was offered to join NSE in the role of chief strategic advisor from April 2013 for an annual compensation of Rs 1.68 crore. Prior to this, he had worked in Balmer and Lawrie in a middle level management with zero exposure to capital markets and was drawing less than Rs 15 lakh per annum as of March 2013.
His annual compensation increased from Rs 1.68 crore to Rs 2.01 crore in April 2014 and again his compensation went up to Rs 3.33 crore in April 2015. In addition, he was re-designated as Group Operating Officer (GOO) and Advisor to MD. Further, in April 2016, his compensation zoomed to Rs 4.21 crore.
According to the Sebi's order, there was no evidence on the file of his performance evaluation although he was consistently rated as a top performer.
However, the hike in the compensation to Subramanian was also guided by the yogi.
"There appears to be a glaring conspiracy of a money making scheme that involves Noticee no. 1 (Ramkrishna) and 6 (Subramanian) with the unknown person (yogi) by which Noticee no. 1 would increase the compensation granted to Noticee no. 6 and Noticee no. 6 would then pay the unknown person from such increased compensation," Sebi noted.
Further, the yogi advised Ramkrishna to revise the contract with Subramanian to five days a week only on paper for the sake of emoluments.
Sebi noted that in spite of being aware of the irregularities on the appointment of Subramanian, NSE and other officials, including former MD and CEO Ravi Narain did not recorded the matter in the minutes of the board meeting in the name of confidentiality and sensitive information.
"From the record of events of the appointment of Noticee no 6 and substantial increase in his emoluments every year and the delegation of powers akin to that of MD and CEO, along with the email exchanges between noticee no 1 with the unknown person where noticee no 6 was also a recipient, it is clear that there has been a conspiracy for the appointment and rise of Noticee no. 6 in NSE," Sebi said.
In the matter of governance lapses while appointing Subramanian, Sebi has levied a fine of Rs 3 crore on Ramkrishna, Rs 2 crore each on NSE, Subramanian and Narain, and Rs 6 lakh on V.R. Narasimhan, who was the chief regulatory officer and compliance officer.
Further, Ramkrishna and Subramanian have been restrained from associating with any market infrastructure institution or any intermediary registered with Sebi for a period of three years, while the same for Narain is two years.
Also, Sebi has directed NSE to forfeit the excess leave encashment of Rs 1.54 crore and the deferred bonus of Rs 2.83 crore, of Ramkrishna, which was retained by the exchange and deposit the same to its Investor Protection Fund Trust within six days.
In addition, Sebi has barred NSE from launching any new product for a period of six months.