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HindustanTimes Thu,18 Sep 2014

Aircel-Maxis deal: chargesheet for Marans today

Abhishek Sharan, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, August 27, 2014
First Published: 23:43 IST(27/8/2014) | Last Updated: 01:56 IST(28/8/2014)

The CBI is set to file on Thursday its charge sheet against former telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran and his brother Kalanithi, among other accused persons and three firms, for the alleged abuse of official position and coercion in the takeover of telecom firm Aircel by Malaysian telecom major Maxis.

The agency’s move has taken into account the opinion of attorney general Mukul Rohatgi who had said that there was enough evidence against the Marans.

The Marans and Maxis have rejected all the allegations against them. The agency’s evidence includes material evidence received from several countries — including UK, Bermuda and Mauritius — received via Letters Rogatories (a formal request sent via judicial channels).

The CBI had probed charges that Dayanidhi, as telecom minister in UPA-1 during 2004-7, deliberately delayed issuing telecom licences and spectrum to Aircel’s sister concern, Dishnet Wireless. The CBI, which had named Maxis’ owner T Ananda Krishnan and its then chief executive officer Ralph Marshall in its October 2011 FIR, examined charges that Dayanidhi allegedly flouted first-come-first-served rules to grant spectrum to Aircel shortly after its former owner, C Sivasankaran, sold the company to Maxis, even though other companies had applied for licences before it.

It was also alleged that the Malaysian firm had allegedly made investments via Astro network in a company owned by the Maran family.

HT had first reported on April 25 that the probe team’s draft chargesheet was awaiting clearance from CBI’s topmost officials.


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