Delhi High Court Grants Bail to Anil Saxena in Religare Finvest Case

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Delhi HC granted bail to Religare Group’s Chief Financial Officer, Anil Saxena in the Religare Finvest case (Anil Saxena vs. State of NCT of Delhi).

Facts of the Case

The case relates to Religare Finvest Ltd (RFL)’s complaint against Religare Enterprises Ltd (REL) promoters Malvinder Singh, Shivinder Singh, Chief Managing Director Godhwani, and several other. It was for misappropriating and siphoning off the funds of about ₹2,000 crores.

According to the prosecution, at the material time, Saxena was part of RFL and REL. He was part of Committees which approved loans. The prosecution alleged that he conspired with the promoters to siphon off funds to various shell companies.

Petitioner’s Arguments

Saxena contended that he was not in the day-to-day control and management of Religare Finvest. He only took decisions regarding sanctioning loans as part of a Committee and not alone.

He explained that out of the 19 loans in question, he approved only 6. Of these, another Committee approved 3. In addition to this, he said that an immovable property secured three other loans.

Saxena relied upon a report submitted by law firm AZB & Partners, which forms part of the charge sheet. Further, he contended that there was no allegation against him which says that he has benefitted from the alleged fraudulent approval of loans.

Respondent’s Arguments

The Complainant, RFL, and Delhi Police emphasized that Saxena signed the financial statements and Annual Reports of RFL. He certified that the loans were not NPAs, knowing that the same was false.

The respondent contended that Saxena misrepresented that the transactions were not related party transactions, even though he was aware that the loans were diverted to entities controlled by the Promoters.

Court’s Observations

The Court observed that it prima facie appeared that Saxena was not in control of RFL’s day to day management.

The Court said,

“The extent of the involvement of the petitioner in the affairs of RFL is a matter of trial. It is not necessary to examine the same in any great detail at this stage.” 

The Court stated there appeared no material which would establish that Saxena derived any monetary benefit from the Promoters, except what had been disclosed in the annual accounts of the companies.

Further, the Court said, 

“…the alleged role of the petitioner (Saxena) in the alleged offence cannot be equated to that of the Promoters who are also alleged to be the beneficiaries of the funds allegedly siphoned from RFL.”

The Court dismissed apprehensions about tampering with the important evidence. It further stated that Saxena had left the employment of the REL almost three years ago. He had also resigned as a director of RFL. Hence, the Court stated that Saxena is not a flight risk.

Court’s Decision

The Court granted bail on a personal bond of ₹25,000 to the satisfaction of the Trial Court with one surety of the like amount.

The conditions for bail are that Saxena cannot leave the NCT of Delhi without prior permission of the Trial Court. Furthermore, he cannot contact any of the employees of REL, RFL, or any of the Religare group of companies. In addition to these, he has to provide a contact number to the SHO of the concerned Police Station and has to ensure his attendance in all the hearings/proceedings.


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