Adani Group Under Fire: Allegations of Stock Manipulation, Accounting Fraud, and Money Laundering

The Adani Group has recently come under fire from US-based short seller Hindenburg Research, which accused them of stock manipulation, accounting fraud, improper use of tax havens, and money laundering.[0] The report caused a sharp drop in the Group’s stocks and a sudden decrease in its founder Gautam Adani’s net worth, falling from the world’s second-richest man to the 15th.

The Adani Group has strongly denied the allegations, calling them “malicious combination of selective information and stale, baseless and discredited allegations” and accusing Hindenburg of attempting to damage its reputation before a large share offering.[1]

The share offering, which was to be worth $2.5 billion, was ultimately called off, resulting in a sharp drop in the Group’s stocks and a decrease in Adani’s net worth.

The Reserve Bank of India issued a statement without naming the Adani Group, saying the banking sector remains resilient and stable, and is under the constant watch of the central bank.[2] Three major banks – State Bank of India, Punjab National Bank and Bank of Baroda – have disclosed their exposure to the Adani Group.[3] SBI has an exposure of ₹27,000 crore, PNB of ₹7,000 crore, and Bank of Baroda of ₹7,000 crore.[3]

Meanwhile, Fitch Ratings and Moody’s downplayed concerns, while S&P red-flagged Adani Ports and Adani Electricity.[4]

The rise in Adani’s wealth in the past three years is largely credited to the Indian government’s mass privatization drive and business-friendly policies, which saw Adani winning several government tenders and infrastructure projects in ports, airports, roads, rail, fossil fuels, and green energy across the country.[5]

The Adani Group’s suspected involvement with Chinese spy balloons and the Hinduja Group have only added to the heightened scrutiny of the conglomerate. Adani has denied the links to the Chinese spy balloons and has not responded to Forbes’ request for comment on the Hinduja Group.

Activist short sellers like Hindenburg Research typically take a short position in a tradable company they believe is heavily overvalued before releasing their reports to the public, in expectation that investors will then drive down the price of their targets.[1]

0. “Adani Ports shares rebound 25% from 52-week low; market cap reclaims Rs 1 lakh crore mark” Business Today, 3 Feb. 2023,

1. “Why has the Adani Group shed US$90bn in value and what do short sellers have to gain?” The Guardian, 2 Feb. 2023,

2. “If Adani affair storm in a tea cup, then the cup belongs to PM Modi: Congress” Hindustan Times, 3 Feb. 2023,

3. “Axis Bank says exposure to Adani Group at 0.94% of total loans” Moneycontrol, 4 Feb. 2023,

4. “Adani mixed bag: S&P outlook negative, Fitch & Moody a little positive” The Indian Express, 3 Feb. 2023,

5. “What Adani Group’s Downfall Reveals About India’s 1% | Time” TIME, 1 Feb. 2023,