Satyam probe: YSR seeks mechanism to involve Central agencies

Special Correspondent

Move follows reports that the agencies sought more cooperation from Andhra Pradesh government

The Chief Minister says the government is ready to entrust the probe to CBI, if need be

Charges political parties with exploiting the issue

HYDERABAD: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy has requested the Ministries of Finance and Company Affairs to suggest a coordinating mechanism involving the central investigation agencies such as Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI) and Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) with the State Crime Investigation Department inquiring into the Satyam Computers’ fraud.

He was making this request in the light of reports in the media — supposedly made by the Central agencies — that the required cooperation with them was wanting.

Apart from the coordinating mechanism, his government would welcome taking over of the case by the Central Bureau of Investigation, if deemed appropriate, he said.

In a letter addressed to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday, Dr. Reddy said the scrutiny of Satyam by investigating agencies following the confession of its erstwhile chairman B. Ramalinga Raju had engaged the attention of the information technology sector in India and abroad and made impact on the IT industry’s image. The issue had become all the more sensational coming as it did just ahead of the general elections. Political parties were exploiting the issue and attacking the State government for diluting the gravity of the case.

Dr. Reddy tried to impress upon the Prime Minister that the CID (the highest agency within the purview of the State government) “waited till a complaint was received on January 9” in the absence of “any proper complaint” to set criminal law in motion. It was in regular touch with the SEBI, Enforcement Directorate and the Registrar of Companies and held several rounds of discussions jointly.

The Director, Investigation of Income Tax Department, was informed of the searches from time to time, and the IT department was involved in the investigation. The probe so far revealed embellishment of bank accounts by the company for over seven years to impress clients in the country and overseas. The inflation of current account balance was testified by bank officials, and the company also raised money from NBFCs by pledging shares.

The Chief Minister, referring to the ‘media allegations’ about Maytas, said Maytas was a group of infrastructure companies which independently participated in different tenders as part of a consortium and secured contracts for certain construction projects. The scope of the investigation included a probe into any link.

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