Listed companies have to disclose to stock exchanges the voting rights break up of shareholders for each class of security issued, a SEBI amendment to the Equity Listing Agreement has specified.

“It has been decided to amend clause 35 of the Equity Listing Agreement to provide additional format for disclosure of voting rights pattern in the company,” said a SEBI circular on Friday.

The listed companies have also been directed to disclose the aggregate number of unclaimed shares, including the freeze on their voting rights, in company’s annual report.

“The voting rights of these shares will remain frozen till the rightful owner claims the shares,” SEBI said.

Suspense account

Taking note of the large number of unclaimed shares pursuant to a public issue, SEBI directed companies to credit such shares into a “demat suspense account”, which is to be opened by the issuer with one of the depository participants.

“Any corporate benefit in terms of securities, accruing on unclaimed shares such as bonus shares, split, etc., shall also be credited to such account.

“The allottee’s account shall be credited as and when he/she approaches the issuer, after undertaking the proper verification of identity of the allottee.”

In another amendment to the Listing Agreement, the regulator reduced the notice period for intimation to the stock exchanges for announcing dividend, bonus, etc., for all securities to seven working days from 21.

The notice period for board meetings has been reduced to two working days from seven days.

To ensure uniformity in dividend declaration, SEBI has also amended the listing agreement to make it mandatory for listed companies to declare dividend on a per share basis instead of on a percentage basis.

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