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Marans seek deferment of framing of charges in telephone exchange case

LiveMint logoLiveMint 28-07-2017 PTI

Chennai: Former telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran and his brother Kalanithi on Friday moved a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court seeking deferment of framing of charges against them in the illegal telephone exchange case, saying several documents submitted by the probe agency were illegible.

Issuing notice to the CBI on the applications filed by the Maran brothers, special judge for CBI cases S. Natarajan adjourned the matter to 11 August for further hearing.

The case relates to alleged misuse of 764 high-speed data lines of the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) at the residence of Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) leader Dayanidhi Maran, when he was the telecom minister between 2004 and 2007.

The CBI has alleged that the data lines were utilised for SUN TV, owned by Kalanithi, and no bills were raised, causing a loss of Rs1.78 crore to the exchequer.

In the chargesheet filed in the court in December 2016, the CBI has also named Kalanithi, the managing director of Sun TV Network Ltd, two former chief general managers of the BSNL, two executives of the TV network and an aide of Dayanidhi.

When the matter came up for hearing on Friday, Dayanidhi appeared in the court while Kalanithi moved a memo under the relevant CrPC (criminal procedure code) section seeking dispensing with his appearance, citing health reasons.

In the applications, the Maran brothers claimed that more than 20 documents provided by the CBI along with the chargesheet in the case, were illegible. They requested the judge to postpone framing of charges till legible documents were provided to them.

Kalanithi also moved another application seeking that his appearance before the court should be permanently dispensed with in the case.

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