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Sun Pharma's shares hit six-year low after further whistleblower allegations emerge

Published on 18/01/19 at 11:23am

Sun Pharma has seen its shares fall by 12% to an almost six-year low after it was rocked by allegations raised by a whistleblower at the company – the second such incident in little over a month.

Lodged with the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), the complaint claims that Suraksha Realty, a real estate firm controlled by Sun Pharma’s co-promoter Sudhir Valia, made transactions to the value of more than Rs 5,800 crore to Indian manufacturer Aditya Medisales between 2014 and 2017.

This is not the first time that Sun Pharma’s corporate governance has been probed – the company has been plagued by similar allegations for some time. In December last year, similar allegations were made by another whistleblower, claiming that Dilip Shanghvi, Sun Pharma Industries founder and Managing Director, and his brother-in-law Sudhir Valia had engaged in financial irregularities with Dharmesh Doshi, who featured prominently in the Ketan Parekh scam of 2001.

And earlier in August, Shanghvi, his company and nine other entities settled an insider trading probe regarding payments of Rs 18 lakh for settlement charges.

Sun Pharma hit back with a request to SEBI to investigate the allegations: “There is a great asymmetry in the information circulating between analysts, investors and media leading to intense speculation,” the company’s letter read. “The availability of information contained in the whistleblower documents to a set of selective investors does put other investors, including retail investors, in a disadvantageous position.

“It is evident from the fact that shareholders value has been drastically eroded within a short span of time due to unsubstantiated complaint/allegation against the company and mala fide campaign launched by certain media houses. We request your office to examine the matter in its entirety, and the role of some media houses and other stakeholders.”

Matt Fellows

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