New Delhi: Former telecom minister under UPA regime Dayanidhi Maran, who was exonerated by a Delhi court in Aircel-Maxis case along with his brother and all other accused on Thursday, said that he was a victim and the case against him was “politically motivated”.
“I was a victim and I had to suffer for 6 long years to prove that I was innocent,” he said.
“Today I stand vindicated… I had resigned the day I was made an accused in the case. Today, I thank all my friends who stood by me,” Maran said.
CBI had filed a charge sheet against the Maran brothers, Ralph Marshall, T Ananda Krishnan and four firms — M/s Sun Direct TV (P) Ltd, M/s Astro All Asia Networks Plc, UK, M/s Maxis Communications Berhad, Malaysia, M/s South Asia Entertainment Holdings Ltd, Malaysia — and then Additional Secretary (Telecom) J S Sarma, who had died during the course of the probe.
They were chargesheeted for alleged offences punishable under section 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of IPC and under relevant provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.
Also Read: Aircel-Maxis Case: Maran Brothers, All Accused Acquitted
In the money laundering case, ED had chargesheeted the Maran brothers, Kalanithi’s wife Kavery, Managing Director of South Asia FM Ltd (SAFL) K Shanmugam, SAFL and Sun Direct TV Pvt Ltd (SDTPL) under provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
The case’s genesis lies in a complaint filed by Aircel owner C. Sivasankaran alleging that he was pressurised to sell his stakes to Maxis. It is later alleged that the Maxis Group, which bought a 74% stake in Aircel in March 2006, invested Rs742 crore in Sun Direct between 2007 and 2009.
In the money laundering case, ED has chargesheeted the Maran brothers, Kalanithi’s wife Kavery, Managing Director of South Asia FM Ltd (SAFL) K Shanmugam, SAFL and Sun Direct TV Pvt Ltd (SDTPL) under provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
Besides Maran brothers, the court discharged two companies – M/s Sun Direct TV (P) Ltd (SDTPL) and M/s South Asia Entertainment Holdings Ltd.
During arguments on framing of charges, Special Public Prosecutor Anand Grover had claimed that Dayanidhi had “pressurised” Chennai-based telecom promoter C Sivasankaran to sell his stakes in Aircel and two subsidiary firms to Malaysian firm Maxis Group in 2006.
The charge was strongly refuted by Dayanidhi. All the accused had denied the allegations against them made by the investigating agencies and had moved bail pleas.