Says the MP was not involved in decision-making after quitting Kalaignar TV

A relative of 2G scam accused Rajya Sabha member Kanimozhi deposed on Friday as a CBI prosecution witness before the special court hearing the case, but disowned the statement he is said to have given a CBI officer.

“After her resignation from the board of the company and her appointment as Rajya Sabha MP, she was not involved in decision-making,” P. Amirtham told the court in reply to a question by the prosecution about Ms. Kanimozhi’s role in the day-to-day management of Kalaignar TV.

Mr. Amirtham, nephew of the former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister, M. Karunanidhi, is a Director in Kalaignar TV.

In his statement earlier to the CBI, Mr. Amirtham had allegedly said: “On being asked, I state that Ms. Kanimozhi Karunanidhi was a founder director of Kalaignar TV Pvt Ltd, Chennai. However, she resigned on June 20, 2007 from the board of directors because the necessary clearances from the Ministry of Home Affairs were delayed. Nevertheless, she used to take a keen interest in the day-to-day affairs of the company.”

Special Public Prosecutor U. U. Lalit then told the court that the witness was resiling from his statement under Section 161 of the Criminal Procedure Code and sought the court’s permission to cross-examine him. The statement under this section is not admissible in court as evidence.

Mr. Amirtham admitted that the investigating officer had recorded his statement. But he had never said anything to the effect that Ms. Kanimozhi “used to take a keen interest in the day-to-day affairs of the company.” When the prosecutor asked him if he was deposing falsely on this point in order to save Ms. Kanimozhi from legal punishment, Mr. Amirtham said: “That is incorrect.”

With Mr. Amirtham claiming that he did not understand English, a CBI prosecutor was present in court to act as a Tamil translator. Mr. Lalit pointed out that the record available on the file indicated that Mr. Amirtham understood English very well. He was corresponding with various authorities in English and had also written letters in that language, he said.

“On the basis of the material on record, I find myself in agreement with the Special Public Prosecutor,” Special Judge O. P. Saini said. “The witness understands English very well, though this fact is disputed by senior advocate S. Shanmugasundaram. Though I am prima facie satisfied that the witness understands English, in view of the request made by the witness for providing facility of translator, his request stands allowed.”

More In: National | News