Mumbai: Wockhardt Ltd on Thursday asked its chief financial officer (CFO) and company secretary Rajiv B. Gandhi to resign, said a Wockhardt company executive familiar with the development.
The move came a day before the embattled company, which earlier this month referred itself to the corporate debt restructuring unit of ICICI Bank Ltd, announces its annual results for 2008 on Friday. Wockhardt follows a calendar year for financial reporting, and has already delayed announcing results twice earlier because SR Batliboi and Co. could not complete its audit due to incomplete information.
Capital markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) had on 20 April disposed of the proceedings against Gandhi and his relatives in an insider trading case after they agreed to pay Rs5 lakh and undergo voluntary debarment from the securities market for 18 months.
“Rajiv B. Gandhi shall not act as compliance officer of any listed company for a period of 18 months,” Sebi added.
Gandhi is also an executive director of Wockhardt Hospital Ltd, a privately owned company of Wockhardt promoters, and Coral Info Services Ltd, a listed entity in which the Khorakiwala family holds at least 60% stake.
The market regulator had earlier conducted an investigation into suspected insider trading from 1 September 1998 to 31 December 1999.
The investigation, according to the order, had found that Gandhi, along with his wife and sister, had dealt in shares of the company on the basis of “unpublished price-sensitive information” violating Sebi’s insider trading norms.
At the end of May, managing director and chairman Habil Khorakiwala relinquished the post of managing director of Wockhardt, the country’s sixth largest drug maker by sales.