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Illegal Phone exchange case: Maran brothers acquitted by CBI court

Team SoOLEGAL 15 Mar 2018 1:36pm

Illegal Phone exchange case: Maran brothers acquitted by CBI court

Chennai: A special CBI court in Chennai on Wednesday discharged former telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran, his brother Kalanithi and other accused in the case. Special judge S Natarajan allowed the petitions filed by the Maran brothers and others seeking their discharge, holding that there was no prima facie case against them. The judge had on March 9 reserved orders for March 14 in the case.

The CBI had alleged that an illegal private telephone exchange was set up at the Chennai residence of Dayanidhi Maran during 2004-06 when he was the telecom minister and it was used for the business transactions involving the Sun Network owned by his brother Kalanithi.The charge against the Marans and others was that during  June 2004 to December 2006, when he was Union minister for communications and information technology, Dayanidhi Maran had been provided 764 telephone lines and high-speed data lines, and that they were misused for commercial purposes for Sun TV. CBI had charged that a loss of Rs 1.78 crore had been caused to the exchequer.

Speaking about Kalanithi Maran, the judge said the Sun Network boss could not be made liable for the alleged offences for the only reason that he was chairperson of the company.

Acceding to Marans’ submissions that the charges had been foisted by the agency due to lack of basic technical understanding by the CBI officials, the special judge said since Sun TV had not been made an accused by the CBI, the charges against the two employees of the channel — Kannan, chief technical officer and Ravi, electrician — are also not maintainable.

The judge held that there was no sufficient material to frame charges against any of the accused. He then allowed the discharge applications and discharged all of them from the case.

Reacting to the judgment, the agency said it is shocked at the decision as it believed that it had very strong case on the basis of evidence gathered by it.It will seek legal opinion and file an appeal against the decision.

Tagged: CBI   Maran brothers   Illegal Telephone Exchange case  
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