Indian mogul slams Western fraud allegations

Adani Group lost billions in market value after US-based research firm Hindenburg accused it of stock manipulation

Indian billionaire Gautam Adani has accused US-based Hindenburg Research of a “deliberate and malicious attempt” to ruin the reputation of his company, major conglomerate Adani Group.

A Hindenburg report in January labeled Adani Group the largest corporate fraud in history, accusing it of long-running stock manipulation and accounting fraud. Adani Group has denied the allegations.

Speaking on Tuesday at the annual general meeting of the group’s flagship firm Adani Enterprises, Adani said the report aimed to generate profits from the drop in Adani Group’s stock prices.

The majority of allegations dated from 2004 to 2015. They were all settled by appropriate authorities at that time… While we promptly issued a comprehensive rebuttal, various vested interests tried to exploit the claims made by the short seller [Hindenburg Research]. These entities encouraged and promoted false narratives across various news and social media platforms,” he stated.

Adani noted that a Supreme Court Expert Committee studying Hindenburg’s allegations found no evidence of stock-price manipulation by the group.

The committee’s report not only observed that the mitigating measures undertaken by the company helped rebuild confidence, but also cited that there were credible charges of targeted destabilization of the Indian markets,” Adani said.

Adani praised investors who did not abandon the company during the crisis that followed Hindenburg’s accusations.

Our track record speaks for itself. I am grateful for the support our stakeholders showed us while we went through these challenges. It is also worth noting that during this crisis… no rating agency cut our ratings. This is the strongest validation of beliefs that investors have on Adani Group companies,” he stated.

The Hindenburg report triggered a stock market rout that cost Adani Group about $145 billion in market value at its lowest point. It also led Gautam Adani’s personal fortune to plunge by as much as $69 billion, or nearly 60%.

However, following the court panel’s clearing report in May, all 10 Adani stocks started to recoup the losses suffered since January. They rallied up to 6% in Tuesday’s trade, following Adani’s address at the AGM.

Adani Group is one of India’s major infrastructure conglomerates with operations spanning mining, power plants, ports, airports, and data centers, among others.

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