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Commentary

Jignesh Shah Resigns from MCX

So it’s finally started to unravel. Jignesh Shah, the founder of FT which started MCX, has now resigned from the MCX board, after the NSEL debacle.

"The NSEL crisis has destroyed everything that I have worked hard to build over past two decades. My loss is not just financial but what has hurt me and my family most is the concerted effort to destroy my credibility and trust for which I have lived by all my life," Shah said.

There have now been multiple arrests, including Anjani Sinha, Amit Mukherjee (along with his Land Rover!), Jay Bahukhandi, NK Patel (of NK Proteins, a borrower),

Shah’s accounts have been frozen, along with that of Joseph Massey, an ex-NSEL board member.

Shah’s saga has been chronicled in a long piece in ET:

"I can’t understand. Why should someone who is so meticulous risk so much? It just does not add up. I know him as a person who is obsessed with beating competition, capturing markets," says Ravi K Sheth, executive director at The Great Eastern Shipping Co, who was among the few who funded Jignesh in the ’90s when he was looking for angel investors for FT.

These questions will probably never be answered. But we have to be honest with ourselves and not try to blame Shah for just about everything. The bureaucrats at FMC (before Ramesh Abhishek who brought down the house of cards) were sleeping at the wheel. The ministry of commerce has a lot to answer for. The brokers who sold this and the few who even knew what kind of a scheme this was, were to blame as well. And finally the investors who put in their money month after month, without questioning why such a simple arbitrage wasn’t being bridged, have to understand it was their risk too. (But at least they lost their money – the others don’t seem to be losing much).

This is coming to the last act of this rotten play. The curtains will close in a few months. We’ll see what happens to Mr. Shah and his beloved FT by then.