The Special Court, trying a disproportionate assets case, on Saturday directed the representatives of five companies, of which Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and other accused were directors in early 1990s, to submit in sworn affidavits by May 19 the details of all directors, shareholders and extracts of bank account statements since the inception of the firms.
Judge John Michael Cunha said the affidavits were necessary to ascertain the existence and availability of documents, which the companies now want the court to summon from the Registrar of Companies and the Director of Investigation, Income Tax, Chennai, in support of their claims over some of the attached properties, which were linked to Ms. Jayalalithaa, V.K. Sasikala, J. Ilavarasi and V.N. Sudhakaran in the charge sheet.
The court passed the order while hearing the claims made by the companies — Lex Properties Development Pvt Ltd, Meadow Agro Farms Pvt Ltd, Riverway Agro Products Pvt Ltd, Ramaraj Agro Mills Pvt Ltd and Signora Business Enterprises Pvt Ltd.
Meanwhile, the court itself has traced certified copies of the Certificate of Incorporation, the Memorandum of Association, Articles of Association, etc, of these companies from the documents marked along with the charge sheet filed by the Directorate of Vigilance and Anti-Corruption, Chennai, in 1997.
Interestingly, the companies, which have been claiming ownership of some of the properties attached from the accused, are now against treating these papers as “court documents” while claiming that the firms are not parties in the disproportionate assets case.
However, while pointing out that these documents ought to have been produced before the court by the companies themselves, the judge said sworn affidavits providing details of the firms were essential for a quick and fair disposal of the case pending for 14 years and to ascertain the truth.
Details of the authorised share capital and paid-up shares and information on income tax and property tax returns during 1993-94, 1994-95 and 1995-96 were among the other details sought from the companies.