Being a stock picker and making public stock recommendations is a hazardous activity. If the stock pick fails, disgruntled investors are quick to draw the gun and shoot to kill. You need a thick skin to handle the criticism and carry on with your job.
Daljeet Kohli is one of the victims of this short-tempered attitude of investors. Though he has several multibagger stock picks like Ajanta Pharma, Alembic Pharma, JB Chemicals, CARE, Gujarat Pipavav etc to his credit, Daljeet was attacked mercilessly over the failure of his stock pick, Sharon Bio-Medicine.
Porinju Veliyath, who is well known for his forever bullish stance and preference for so-called ‘low quality’ stocks, is also frequently lampooned as an ‘operator’, ‘fixer’, ‘manipulator’ and whatnot whenever his stock picks are discussed. Though there is no evidence to show any wrong-doing on Porinju’s part, people nevertheless attack him and his stock picks.
Basant Maheshwari is the latest to join the club. The alleged failure of his stock pick, Hawkins Cooker, has not gone down well with a section of investors and several of them have taken to MMB to vent their ire on him.
Basant has been subjected to the choicest of abuses. Someone called him a “bluff master” and said that he has “lost credibility”. Another asked him to “apologize”. Yet another threatened to file a “complaint with SEBI”. Another ridiculed Basant’s followers as suffering from “BM Mania” and claimed that they are “blinded” by his charm. Yet another claimed to have “busted BM’s gang who mislead the small retail investors for their own vested interest”. Some crossed the line by alleging that “Basant is a crook making tall claims of CAGR using leverage” and that “BM’s free advice just to manipulate the stock price so that he and his paid members get the benefit”. Some other allegations are that Basant had already sold off the stock when he made the public recommendation, etc, etc.
Basant has so far maintained a dignified silence and kept a stiff upper lip, refusing to be drawn into the debate.
However, Basant’s fans have rallied in his support. They have descended in large numbers and are keeping a 24×7 vigil at MMB. Every criticism of Basant meets with a swift and brutal rebuttal. The strategy that Basant’s fans are following is to highlight his long track record of picking winning stock picks and to emphasize that he is a man of “integrity”. They have also adopted the strategy of lampooning the detractors. “The critics of BM don’t know the story – they truly are the frogs in the well and who remain content being in the well. Live with your ignorance you ignoramus” one fan said. Another added that the criticism of Basant is “unprofessional and unacceptable statement. We know BM very well. Don’t act like smart here”. Yet another claimed to be happy to be living in “BM Mania”. Another was more direct: “You are only here to discredit and denounce and raise allegations without putting yourself in any line.. If you are such great man, pls give 2-3 reco like BM and lets see what happens in 6 months..”
Interestingly, Basant Maheshwari is not a stranger to criticism. On an earlier occasion, Basant was attacked on twitter for allegedly making a claim that his PMS/ portfolio had earned “65% CAGR” and for allegedly not having any evidence to back it up. His detractors also took umbrage at the fact that Basant is not “registered as a RIA” and is not “subjected to audit” from SEBI. On that occasion also, Basant’s followers turned up in large numbers to combat the detractors. There was a free-for-all slug fest of allegations and counter-allegations which lasted many days.
However, Basant is probably unaffected by all the criticism. He is a seasoned player and knows that if one wants to be in public life, one has to accept the bouquets with the brickbats.