CBI on Friday filed a charge sheet against the then Telecom Minister Dayanidhi Maran and his brother Kalanithi among others for allegedly using 764 high-speed data lines at the former’s residence which were used by a private TV channel causing loss of Rs 1.78 crore to the exchequer.
The charge sheet has been filed in a Special Court in Chennai under IPC sections related to criminal conspiracy and forgery and relevant provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act, CBI said.
The agency has alleged in the charge sheet that altogether 764 telephone numbers were provided to Dayanidhi for which no bills were raised causing a loss of Rs 1.78 crore to BSNL, Chennai and MTNL, Delhi. CBI also named the former minister’s brother Kalanithi Maran who was Managing Director of Sun TV Network Limited, two the then Chief General Managers of BSNL, two executives of Sun TV network and an aide of Dayanidhi in the charge sheet.
In a statement, CBI spokesperson Devpreet Singh said the charge sheet has been filed on the allegations of installing a number of high end telecommunication facilities having PRA/BRA/ISDN/Leased Line etc at the residence of Maran in Chennai, illegally under service category for which bills were not raised for 2004-07.
“It was alleged that during the period from June, 2004 to December 2006, 364 (approx) telephone numbers/lines were installed at Gopalapuram, Chennai residence of the then Union Minister and during the period from December, 2006 to September 2007, 353 number (approx) of telephone lines were installed at Ist Avenue Boat Club Road, Chennai which was the new residence of then MoC and IT,” the spokesperson said.
She said it was further alleged that 10 post-paid mobile connections (approx) with vanity numbers in respect of 9 numbers were given to a private Television channel as per the verbal orders of then Minister and that these connections were given under “service category” and no bill was raised.
“There was huge data transfer which included voice, video and audio through these telephone connections and all these facilities were allegedly used for the benefits of said television channel network, owned by his brother,” she said.