Tamil Nadu

Charges framed against Sasikala

Pertain to two cases booked by ED under provisions of FERA

The Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate-II (ACMM-II) on Thursday framed charges against V.K. Sasikala, an aide of former Chief Minister Jayalalithaa and jailed in Bengaluru now, through video-conferencing in two cases booked by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) under provisions of the Foreign Exchange Regulation Act (FERA).

At 11 a.m., Sasikala appeared on screen before ACMM S. Malarmathy. A blue curtain was behind her. Jail superintendent of Parapana Agrahara prison and one more prison official were with her. Ms. Malarmathy was sitting with advocates of both sides and court staff in the video-conferencing facility.

Ms. Malarmathy said, “Since there are certain errors in the procedure of framing charges which was done earlier, now we are framing charges afresh against you.”

She read out details of the cases against Sasikala and then the charges levelled against her.

When questioned, Sasikala denied the charges.

The case of ED is that Sasikala, as chairperson-cum-director of JJTV Private Limited, had authorised the company’s managing director and her nephew V. Bhaskaran to negotiate and enter into a contract with any foreign supplier with a transponder facility for launching a Tamil satellite TV channel in the early 1990s.

Unauthorised payments

The ED alleged huge payments were made to individuals in Malaysia and firms in U.S. and Singapore Dollars for hiring transponders and uplink facilities for JJ TV without getting permission of the Reserve Bank of India. They also procured equipment by routing money unauthorised channel. Sasikala is facing four cases- three with Mr. Bhaskaran and one more separately.

During the proceedings on Thursday, A. Asokan, counsel for Sasikala, contended that in the complaints filed by assistant director of ED, it was stated that the company was represented by Mr. Bhaskaran who was the MD.

“Therefore, question relating to the company can be asked only to Mr. Bhaskara,” said Mr. Asokan. This stand was opposed by Hema, counsel for ED.

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Printable version | Apr 10, 2020 6:05:20 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/charges-framed-against-sasikala/article25795776.ece

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