Adani-Hindenburg row: Why can’t NSE pull off a Dow with controversy-hit Adani Group stocks, asks TMC MP Mahua Moitra

Trinamool Congress MP Mahua Moitra on Friday questioned why the National Stock Exchange (NSE) was not reevaluating the index membership of Adani Group firms’ stocks even after S&P Dow Jones said it will remove Adani Enterprises, the Adani group’s flagship firm, from sustainability indices from February 7. While Adani Enterprises is part of the coveted Nifty50 index, Adani Total Gas, Adani Transmission, and Adani Greens are part of the Nifty Next 50 index.  

Moitra, MP from Krishnanagar, West Bengal, tweeted: “S&P Dow Jones removes Adani Enterprises from Dow Jones indices due to charges of stock manipulation & accounting fraud. Why is @NSEIndia not reevaluating index membership of Adani stocks when international ones are? ”  

On Friday, S&P Dow Jones Indices, in a brief note, said: “Adani Enterprises (XBOM: 512599) will be removed from the Dow Jones Sustainability indices following a media & stakeholder analysis triggered by allegations of stock manipulation and accounting fraud.” 

S&P Dow Jones Indices said it will make the changes to the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices, effective prior to the opening on Tuesday, February 7. 

The news came amid NSE’s decision to place three Adani group stocks namely Adani Enterprises, Adani Ports & SEZ, and Ambuja Cements under additional surveillance measures framework. 

Stocks of Adani Total Gas, Adani Transmission, and Adani Green Energy have fallen by over 50 per cent in the last 10 days. The Nifty Next 50 index, which has a 9 per cent concentration of these stocks, has fallen 8 per cent.

Moitra has been targeting the Adani group and billionaire Gautam Adani over the US short-seller Hindenburg Research report, which led to a massive plunge in the value of Adani group shares in the stock market. 

Earlier, Moitra even targeted lawyer Cyril Shroff, saying that he should recuse himself from SEBI’s Committee on Corporate Governance & Insider Trading if it’s investigating the Adani issue, as his daughter is married to Adani’s son. 

“Greatest respect for ace lawyer Cyril Shroff but his daughter is married to Gautam Adani’s son. Shroff serves on SEBI’s Committee on Corporate Governance & Insider Trading. If at all @SEBI_India is examining Adani issue, Shroff should recuse himself. Perceptions are Reality,” she wrote.

On Thursday, the parliamentarian urged the insurance regulator IRDAI to keep a watch on the state-run Life Insurance Corporation (LIC), which has invested over Rs 30,000 crore in the ports-to-power conglomerate. 

“On Jan 30 @LICIndiaForever said the market value of their Adani holding as of Jan 27  vs entry price was +86%. Since then Adani stocks have lost >50%. Watch out #IRDA – depositor money at stake here!” she said in a  tweet.   

The LIC in a statement on January 30 said its total holding under equity and debt was Rs 35,917.31 crore as on 31 December 2022 in the Adani group companies. As per the statement, the total purchase value of equity, purchased over the last many years, under all the Adani group companies was Rs 30,127 crore, and the market value for the same as at the close of market hours on 27 January 2023 was Rs 56,142 crore. 

The largest insurer also said that the total amount invested under the Adani Group amounted to Rs 36,474.78 crore as on January 31. It, however, said that its total exposure in the group till September last year was less than 1 per cent, suggesting any adverse situation would affect it marginally. 

 But on Thursday, Tuhin Kant Pandey, Secretary, Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM), said LIC’s exposure to Adani group companies is within insurance regulator IRDAI and its risk management framework.

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