Formers telecom minister had set up an illegal telephone exchange for private use of Sun TV
GN Bureau | February 1, 2013
After having exposed but finding no action against former union telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran for secretly and fraudulently setting up a telephone exchange at his Chennai home for the exclusive use of his family concerns, Sun TV and newspaper Dinakaran, S Gurumurthy, noted investigative journalist and columnist, has now approached the supreme court seeking investigation and prosecution of the minister for corruption.
Attached below: Gurumurthy's petition
Gurumurthy points out in his petition that setting up the exchange with 323 high-speed telephone lines some of which were ISDN lines used for transfer of data, voice and video, caused a loss of Rs 440 crore to the exchequer.
He says though the fraud was detected by the CBI way back in September 2007, three months after Maran was shifted out of the ministry and brought to the notice of the ministry, the report was suppressed.
Giving details, Gurumurthy alleges that the exchange with 323 lines was set up at Maran’s Chennai home in 2006-o7 in the name of the chief general manager of BSNL. These lines were then smuggled away through a cable into the office of Sun TV, promoted by his brother Kalanidhi Maran, for use. A CBI inquiry unearthed it in September 2007. Similar ISDN facilities were provided to the family run newspaper Dinakaran in Madurai.
Gurumuthy brought these facts out through a series of articles in New Indian Express in June 2011. He also wrote to the CBI for further action. He laments that nothing moved the government or the CBI to take appropriate action.
He has pleaded that this “malafide, arbitrary, illegal and unconstitutional” action of the former minister be probed thoroughly under the court’s supervision and the guilty punished.
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