The regulator says that Himalaya yogi was running the largest stock exchange in India as a puppet master

Chitra Ramkrishna, Managing Director and CEO of the National Stock Exchange (India), participates in a discussion of the future of finance during the International Monetary Fund and World Bank Annual Meetings in Washington on October 12, 2014. REUTERS/Yuri Grippas

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MUMBAI (Reuters) – An investigation by the market regulator ahead of its long-awaited public listing on the stock exchange revealed that the former head of India’s largest stock exchange shared classified information with a yogi and sought his advice on critical decisions.

In the case of “strange misconduct” which was a “flagrant breach” of regulations, Chitra Ramkrishna, the former CEO of the National Stock Exchange (NSE), shared information including the exchange’s financial forecasts, business plans and board agenda with an alleged spiritual view. The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) in the Himalayas said.

SEBI said in an order, imposing sanctions on Ramkrishna, the stock exchange and other former senior executives of the terms.

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Ramkrishna, from Leaving NSE in 2016 Claiming “personal reasons,” it was not immediately available for comment. NSE and SEBI did not respond to requests for comment.

Allegations of the downfall of corporate governance have haunted NSE for several years. The exchange had intended to go public in 2017, but its listing was derailed by allegations that officials had given some high-frequency traders unfair access through the co-location servers, which could speed up trading using algorithms.

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After a three-year investigation, SEBI fined the stock exchange More than $90 million prevented him from raising money in the stock markets for six months. NSE challenged the order in court and sought SEBI’s approval to file a new IPO.

However, during this investigation, SEBI found documents showing emails of Ramkrishna to an unknown person, who said during interrogation that she was a ‘spiritual force’ who had been seeking guidance from her for 20 years.

Ramkrishna, in her defence, told SEBI that sharing information with someone who is “spiritual in nature” does not compromise confidentiality or integrity.

However, the SEBI order stated that it was “absurd” for Ramkrishna to assert that sharing sensitive information such as dividend percentages, business plans and performance evaluations of NSE employees did no harm.

The SEBI investigation also found that the alleged mentor had a significant influence on hiring a mid-level executive, without any capital market experience, directly as an advisor to Ramkrishna with insufficient documentation and a higher salary than most senior NSE officials.

SEBI said the guru ran the exchange, and Ramkrishna was “just a puppet in his hands”.

Questions emailed to the address given in the SEBI order as belonging to the teacher were not immediately answered.

SEBI also said that NSE and its board of directors were aware of the confidential information exchange but chose to “keep the matter confidential.”

The regulator fined the exchange 20 million rupees ($270,000) and banned the exchange from launching any new products for six months.

SEBI has imposed a fine of Rs 30 million on Ramkrishna and banned it from any SEBI registered exchange and broker for three years.

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Ramkrishna was among a group of CEOs who started NSE in the early 1990s as a competitor to the more established BSE Ltd, which was known as the Bombay Stock Exchange. She was appointed joint managing director of NSE in 2009 and was promoted to CEO in 2013.

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(Reporting by Abherop Roy) Editing by Ewan Rocha and Lincoln Fest.

Our criteria: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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