Karunanidhi silent as Marans raided in 2G case (Roundup)October 10th, 2011 - 8:39 pm ICT by IANS
Chennai/New Delhi/Hyderabad, Oct 10 (IANS) The premises of top DMK leader and former union minister Dayanidhi Maran and his elder brother Kalanithi Maran were searched by officials of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Monday in connection with the second generation (2G) telecom airwaves case, even as the party chose to remain silent on the issue.
Conducted across three cities - Chennai, Hyderabad and the national capital - the searches involved the premises of the Marans as also of Apollo Hospitals director Suneeta Reddy. A police report was also registered against the Maran brothers and some documents were seized, officials said.
“We conducted the search and seisure operations at nine places,” CBI spokesperson Dharini Mishra told IANS in New Delhi. “We have a strong case. Both brothers will be quizzed very soon,” she said, adding no case was filed against Reddy.
She, however, declined to comment if the agency proposed to take the Marans into custody.
According to the agency, similar police reports were also registered against Ralph Marshall, chief executive of Astro All Asian Networks of Britain and Maxis Communications of Malaysia that are said to have invested in Sun TV, as also T. Ananda Krishnan, said to be associated with Maxis and chairman of Usaga Tegas of Malaysia.
These apart, officials said, the police reports were also filed against three private companies — the Maran’s-promoted Sun Direct TV, Astro All Asia Networks and Maxis Communications.
The Maran brothers are grand-nephews of DMK president and former Tamil Nadu chief minister M. Karunanidhi, who is on a tour to Tiruchirapalli, some 320 km from Chennai, to campaign for K.N. Nehru in the ensuing bye-election to the state assembly.
Karunanidhi’s son M.K. Tamilarasu went to the residence of Dayanidhi Maran on hearing about the raid, but was not allowed inside by the officers.
The development, which came to light early in the morning, did not make much of an impact on the shares of Sun TV Networks, which ended 1.21 percent higher at Rs.288.15. Kalanithi Maran and his family also control budget carrier SpiceJet apart from an empire that stretches from media to entertainment.
Two other top DMK leaders — former communications minister A. Raja and Rajya Sabha member and Karunanidhi’s daughter Kanimozhi — are already in judicial custody over the second generation (2G) spectrum allocation case.
According to CBI officials, the Marans came under the scanner after a complaint by industrialist C. Sivasankaran that he was forced to exit mobile telephone company Aircel by them when Dayanidhi Maran was the telecom minister.
Sivasankaran alleged Aircel was not given telecom licences and forced to sell his holdings to Malaysia-based Maxis group, owned by T. Ananda Krishnan. The CBI registered a case against the Marans Sunday under the Prevention of Corruption Act.
The search and seizure operations were conducted by a team from the national capital. Among the premises raided were those of Dayanidhi Maran in Chennai and New Delhi, those of Sun Network in Hyderabad, offices of Maxis in New Delhi and Kalanithi Maran’s house in Chennai.
Suneeta Reddy, whose premises were raided at Chennai and Hyderabad, is the daughter of Pratap Reddy, the founder of Apollo Hospitals. She was chairperson of Aircel in 2005, and was questioned by the CBI last month. She also has stakes in Sindya Securities and Investments, which holds 26 percent share in Aircel.
Apollo Hospitals, however, had clarified that the investments of Sindya Securities and Investments in Aircel were in compliance with Indian laws.
The CBI is also investigating a case related to the provision of over 320 telephone lines, a sort of a mini telephone exchange, at the residence of Dayanidhi Maran. It is alleged the lines were linked to Sun TV’s office and used for data transfer. The line was in the name of the general manager, Bharat Sanchar Nigam.
Dayanidhi Maran was heading the communications ministry between 2004 and 2007.
Earlier in March, Kanimozhi and Karunanidhi’s second wife Dayalu Ammal were questioned by the CBI in Chennai in connection with Rs.214 crore received by Kalaignar TV, in which a majority stake is owned by Karunanidhi’s family, from the DB Realty group of companies.
- CBI raids Marans, DMK silent - Oct 10, 2011
- 2G case: CBI begins searches in Hyderabad - Oct 10, 2011
- I will not let down Maran brothers: Karunanidhi - Oct 11, 2011
- Stronger case against Dayanidhi Maran than Raja: CBI - Oct 10, 2011
- Maran denies forcing Sivasankaran to exit Aircel (Lead) - Jun 06, 2011
- Was forced to sell Aircel stake, Sivasankaran tells CBI - Jun 06, 2011
- Sun TV shares slide on telecom tangle - Oct 10, 2011
- Never forced anyone to sell Aircel stake: Dayanidhi Maran - Jun 06, 2011
- Maran closeted with party colleagues, set to fly to Chennai - Jul 07, 2011
- CBI to question Dayanidhi Maran soon - Jul 07, 2011
- 2G case: Maran brothers quizzed by CBI (Lead) - Sep 14, 2011
- Opposition parties ask PM to explain Maran fiasco (Lead) - Jul 07, 2011
- 2G claims another minister: Maran quits (Roundup) - Jul 07, 2011
- JPC meets CBI chief, may call Maran on 2G - Jun 07, 2011
- Sun TV shares down after Maran quits as textiles minister - Jul 07, 2011
Tags: apollo hospitals, asian networks, bye election, central bureau of investigation, dayanidhi maran, direct tv, dmk leader, elder brother, m karunanidhi, marans, maxis, ralph marshall, seisure, sun tv, suneeta, t ananda krishnan, tamil nadu, tamilarasu, three cities, union minister