Introduction: The Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) recently announced a significant development regarding the implementation timeline of Circular SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/CIR/P/2023/156. This circular, dated September 20, 2023, outlines crucial provisions related to the redressal of investor grievances through the SEBI Complaint Redressal (SCORES) Platform and its linkage to the Online Dispute Resolution platform.

Detailed Analysis:

1. Original Implementation Timeline: The circular mandated that the provisions regarding the workflow of processing investor grievances and the framework for monitoring and handling complaints were set to be in force from December 04, 2023.

2. SCORES Authentication and API Integration: Designated bodies mentioned in Schedule II of the circular were required to apply for SCORES Authentication and/or Application Programming Interface (API) integration by the specified period to ensure compliance with the circular by December 04, 2023.

3. Extension of Implementation Deadline: In a significant move, SEBI has decided to extend the effective date for the implementation of the aforementioned provisions. The new deadline is April 01, 2024, providing stakeholders with additional time for preparation and compliance.

4. Rescinding of Previous Circular: circular SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/CIR/P/2023/156 dated September 20, 2023, will rescind the Master Circular on the redressal of investor grievances through the SCORES platform (SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/P/CIR/2022/0150) with effect from April 01, 2024.

5. Continued Reporting Obligations: Despite the extension, entities are required to submit the Action Taken Report (“ATR”) on SCORES within 21 calendar days from the date of receiving a complaint, as directed in the original circular.

6. SEBI’s Regulatory Authority: This circular is issued under the powers conferred by Section 11(1) of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992, demonstrating SEBI’s commitment to investor protection and the regulation of the securities market.

Conclusion: SEBI’s decision to extend the implementation deadline for the provisions outlined in Circular SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/CIR/P/2023/156 signifies a proactive approach towards ensuring that all stakeholders have sufficient time to align with the new framework. As the securities market evolves, such regulatory measures aim to safeguard investor interests and promote a transparent and efficient grievance redressal system. Market participants are urged to stay updated with SEBI’s communications and adjust their processes accordingly to meet the revised deadline of April 01, 2024. For further details, the complete circular is available on the SEBI website at sebi.gov.in.

Securities and Exchange Board of India

Circular No. SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/CIR/P/2023/183 Dated: December 01, 2023

To,
All Recognized Stock Exchanges (including Commodity Exchanges)
All Depositories
All Listed Companies
All SEBI Registered Intermediaries
Association of Investment Bankers of India
Association of Mutual Funds in India
Association of Portfolio Managers in India
BSE Administration & Supervision Ltd.
Indian REITs Association
Trustees Association of India

Dear Sir/Madam,

Subject: Extension of timeline for implementation of provisions of circular circular SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/CIR/P/2023/156 dated September 20, 2023 on Redressal of investor grievances through the SEBI Complaint Redressal (SCORES) Platform and linking it to Online Dispute Resolution platform.

1. The provisions of circular with ref. no. circular SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/CIR/P/2023/156 dated September 20, 2023 related to work flow of processing of investor grievances by Entities and framework for monitoring and handling of investor complaints by the Designated Bodies were required to come into force with effect from December 04, 2023.

2. Further, the designated bodies referred to in the Schedule II of circular SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/CIR/P/2023/156 dated September 20, 2023 were required to apply for SCORES Authentication and/or for Application Programming Interface (API) integration with SCORES within such period so as to ensure that Designated Bodies can comply with provisions of the said circular by December 04, 2023 and onwards.

3. It has been decided to extend the effective date of implementation of above said provisions to April 01, 2024.

4. Accordingly, circular SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/CIR/P/2023/156 dated September 20, 2023 shall rescind the Master Circular on the redressal of investor grievances through the SEBI Complaints Redress System (SCORES) platform SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/P/CIR/2022/0150 dated November 07, 2022 on SCORES with effect from April 01, 2024.

5. The Entities however, shall continue to submit the Action Taken Report (“ATR”) on SCORES within 21 calendar days from the date of receipt of the complaint as directed in circular SEBI/HO/OIAE/IGRD/CIR/P/2023/156 dated September 20, 2023.

6. This Circular is issued in exercise of powers conferred under Section 11(1) of the Securities and Exchange Board of India Act, 1992 to protect the interests of investors in securities and to promote the development of, and to regulate the securities market.

7. This Circular is available on SEBI website at sebi.gov.in.

Yours faithfully,

Vandana Rajesh Kumar Deputy General Manager Investor Grievance Redressal Division Office of Investor Assistance and Education Tel No. 022 26449646 Email id – vandanak@sebi.gov.in

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