2G scam: CBI records ex-Aircel chief Sivasankaran’s statement

Mr Sivasankaran was asked to meet CBI officials to clarify certain questions and series of events involving alleged irregularities in spectrum allocation to Aircel, a telecom firm founded by him and later sold to Malaysian firm Maxis

New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) today recorded statement of former Aircel chief C Sivasankaran in connection with its ongoing investigations in the second generation spectrum allocation scam during UPA-I regime, reports PTI.

CBI sources said Mr Sivasankaran was asked to meet its officials to clarify certain questions and series of events involving alleged irregularities in spectrum allocation to Aircel, a telecom firm founded by him and later sold to Malaysian firm Maxis.

Mr Sivasankaran heads the $3 billion conglomerate Siva Group with operations in realty, telecom, shipping, energy and agri exports and e-education/software.

Sources said Mr Sivasankaran's statements were being recorded at an undisclosed location in the national capital.

They said Mr Sivasankaran had alleged that he was forced by DMK MP and textile minister Dayanidhi Maran to sell his stake in Aircel to Maxis.

Mr Sivasankaran had alleged his applications for licences were rejected when Mr Maran was the telecom minister in 2006, forcing him to sell his company to Maxis, whose owner is considered to be close to Mr Maran and his brother Kalanidhi, who owns Sun TV.

Mr Maran is alleged to have granted 14 licences to Dishnet Wireless (Aircel) during his tenure as the telecom minister.

The CBI is looking into financial transactions of Sun TV and Maxis. Besides, it is also looking into various aspects of takeover of Aircel by Maxis group, the sources said.

The probe agency has already registered a preliminary enquiry on issues in the second generation (2G) spectrum allocation between 2001 and 2007 and is actively looking into matter.

The preliminary enquiry was registered against "unknown persons" following a Supreme Court directive to detect any alleged anomaly in 'first-come-first-serve' during the spectrum allocation between 2001 and 2007.

Maxis has 74% stake in Aircel which has presence in 23 telecom circles-Chennai, Tamil Nadu, Assam, North East, Orissa, Bihar, Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, West Bengal, Kolkata, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Delhi, UP (West), UP (East), Maharashtra and Goa, Mumbai, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Gujarat and Rajasthan.

Former telecom minister Arun Shourie, who held the charge between 2003 and 2004, has already been questioned by the CBI on 25th February in detail about the allocation of telecom airwaves during his tenure.

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Micro Tech in talks with S Africa cos for market entry

Micro Technologies has appointed home appliances dealer S-Mart as their main dealer for the Tamil Nadu and Puducherry markets

Software and hardware security solutions provider Micro Technologies India is holding talks with several companies in South Africa for a formal foray into the market in that country, a top company official said today.

The Mumbai-based firm, engaged in providing software and hardware security solutions across the infrastructure, automobile and mobile verticals, currently exports to West Asia, Japan and China.

However, it intends to enter Africa by appointing a representative dealer there, Micro Technologies (India) Executive Director S Aditya said.

“We are in talks with many companies... We are looking at operations in Tanzania first and then to increase our presence in the African market,” he told PTI.

Stating that the African market has huge untapped potential, he said this move would help increase their global market presence. “Right now we are exporting our products to Israel, China and to Japan,” he said.

The company reported a Rs400 crore revenue for 2010-11, with 40% of it coming from exports.

On their outlook for 2011-12, he said they aimed for 40% growth this year. “We grew by 20% in 2010-11 (compared to the previous year). This year we are aiming at a growth of 35-40%,” he said.

Micro Technologies today appointed home appliances dealer S-Mart as their main dealer for the Tamil Nadu and Puducherry markets. The company has 238 main dealers and has two subsidiaries each in Australia and Dubai.

On Monday, Micro Technologies ended 0.89% down at Rs134.15 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex gained 0.24% to 18,240.11.

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IBM wins contract worth Rs298 crore from India Infoline

IBM has entered a 10-year strategic outsourcing agreement with India Infoline that will help IIFL deliver a higher level of customer satisfaction

Technology major IBM on Monday secured a contract from India Infoline (IIFL) worth Rs298 crore to transform the latter’s IT infrastructure and manage IT costs.

IBM has entered a 10-year strategic outsourcing agreement with IIFL, that will help IIFL deliver a higher level of customer satisfaction, strengthen its IT security framework and control IT operations, IBM said in a statement.

Under this agreement, IBM will take over the complete IT operations of IIFL, which will entail managing more than 700 IIFL branches spread across India. The IT infrastructure at IIFL comprises more than 450 servers spread across five data centres and nine local server rooms with over 15,000 end user assets distributed across its branches.

The project will also include a wide area network that connects all IIFL offices to the corporate offices in Mumbai. This collaboration will significantly improve customer experience for IIFL’s end customers.

This is by ensuring higher uptime for its broking platform ‘Traders Terminal’, speedier response and resolution of any technology related issues, the statement said.

The scalable technology deployment will enable IIFL to roll out enhanced functionality in shorter time frames. IBM will also set up a centralised help desk, roll out a pan-India desk side services capability to support users, applications and infrastructure in branches, and deploy service management processes to cover assets, IT security, and technology, among others.

On Monday, IIFL ended 0.72% up at Rs76.50 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex gained 0.24% to 18,240.11.

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