The decision to probe the DTH broadcasters was taken after agency sleuths found that some of the telecom companies, under probe in the 2G scam, were also broadcasters of the service
New Delhi: After his alleged involvement in the second generation (2G) scam and leasing of telephone lines, former telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran’s ‘role’ in sanctioning of spectrum to Sun Direct is now being looked into by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), reports PTI.
The agency had sought the files from Department of Telecom (DoT) related to spectrum allocation made to direct-to-home (DTH) broadcasters by seeking details of sanction of bandwidth.
The decision to probe the DTH broadcasters was taken after agency sleuths found that some of the telecom companies, under probe in the 2G scam, were also broadcasters of the service, official sources said.
The files pertained to Dish TV India, Reliance Big TV Pvt Limited, Bharti Multi-media, Bharti Business Channel Pvt Limited, Doordarshan, SunDirect TV Pvt Limited and Tata Sky.
However, barring Sun Direct, all other files were returned by the CBI to the authority and sources in the know said allocation of spectrum to the Tamil Nadu-based TV channel was being looked into.
The CBI recently registered a case against Mr Maran, his brother Kalanithi and two others besides three companies for allegedly receiving favours during the DMK leader’s tenure as telecom minister.
Searches were carried out on 10th October at various places including residential premises of Maran, who resigned earlier this year as textiles minister.
The CBI has also registered a preliminary enquiry to probe into allegations of allocation of over 300 telephone lines to the residence of Mr Maran in Chennai and illegally linking with a television channel owned by his brother.
These 323 residential lines were in the name of BSNL general manager and connecting the Boat House residence of Mr Maran with office of Sun TV through a dedicated underground cable during his tenure as telecom minister, CBI alleged.
The sources said these lines were not ordinary telephone lines but more costly ISDN, capable of carrying huge data thus facilitating faster transmission of TV news and programmes across the globe.
The CBI alleged that a stealth cable was used to connect the residence of the minister with Sun TV office to give impression that these lines were for the minister but actually they were used by the channel.
Besides Team Anna detractor Agnivesh, another former member ‘Waterman’ Rajinder Singh also raised the issue urging Mr Kejriwal to come clean on the controversy regarding donations to Anna Hazare movement, saying he could not see transparency in the matter as Team Anna preaches
New Delhi: Questions were raised on Sunday about the use of funds donated by the public to Team Anna with Swami Agnivesh alleging that money was deposited in the trust run by Arvind Kejriwal from which the names of major team members were missing, a claim dismissed as made “out of anger”, reports PTI.
Besides Team Anna detractor Agnivesh, another former member ‘Waterman’ Rajinder Singh also raised the issue urging Mr Kejriwal to come clean on the controversy regarding donations to Anna Hazare movement, saying he could not see transparency in the matter as Team Anna preaches.
Team Anna dismissed the allegations, saying Agnivesh might be levelling such accusations “out of anger”. Agnivesh was removed from the Team following the surfacing of a video clip which purportedly showed him asking a person to deal strongly with Mr Hazare.
They said all details regarding their accounts will be put on the website of Public Cause Research Foundation (PCRF), by this month-end after a special audit. Activist Kiran Bedi, who is facing allegations of overcharging institutions on travel bills, alleged that there was a “pattern to defame” Team Anna members and said “hang some of us if that helps”.
Agnivesh, who had on Saturday alleged that Mr Kejriwal has siphoned off over Rs80 lakh donated by people for Anna Hazare’s agitation by diverting it to a trust run by him, said Mr Hazare does not have his name in the Public Cause Research Foundation run by Mr Kejriwal.
“Even justice Santosh Hegde, who has a clean image, does not have his name in the trust. So, the main members of the team were not part of the trust and the old trust where Mr Kejriwal and his members were part...the money was deposited in their name,” he alleged.
“I am not blaming Mr Kejriwal that he is deliberately doing so and does not want transparency. I am also not saying there is some fraud and corruption in accounts,” Angivesh said, insisting that his protest is only for transparency.
Claiming that Mr Hazare was keen to have a new trust and include new members, Agnivesh said he wanted to complete the audit by 15th October and had asked Mr Kejriwal to put on the website the details of donations received by them in the core committee meeting.
Maintaining that his protest in only for transparency, he said, “I have said this (to give details of accounts) because if they will do it as soon as possible, there won’t be any doubt and question. If they will delay, people would question why the accounts are not given”.
“India Against Corruption campaign is about transparency.
When we are fighting against corruption, then transparency is main and important part of it, accountability is second part of it,” he said.
“In the middle there were questions raised on Indian Vision Foundation and on Kiran Bedi’s flight fare controversy and all then it has become more important to check the accounts of old trusts,” he said.
Agnivesh had on Saturday alleged that all donations which were made for the India Against Corruption (IAC) were diverted to Public Cause Research Foundation run by Mr Kejriwal and that Mr Kejriwal was delaying the opening of a bank account in the name of IAC.
Maintaining that they were ‘transparent’ in their functioning, Mr Kejriwal’s associate and Team Anna member Manish Sisodia said, “Our accounts are already on the website. We have conducted a special audit for the last six months and by the month end we are putting the details on the website.”
On Agnivesh, he said, “We have no animosity with Swami Agnivesh. He could have said something out of anger. It’s not in our custom to rebut against anything that an elderly says.
He is a good person and we all respect him.”
He said Mr Hazare was aware that donations were being deposited in the foundation account and nothing was hid from him.
Reacting to the developments, Ms Bedi said, “There is obviously a pattern to defame every member of Team Anna. It has been systematic from day one.”
“Team Anna is paying a personal cost for raising national concerns on rampant corruption and voter awareness to ensure the passing of the bill in Parliament,” she said.
She said this only underscores the need to stay focussed on the Winter Session of Parliament and ensure that the Jan Lokpal Bill is enacted.
Ms Bedi said the Mr Hazare movement was of millions and there was a need for staying united. “After that hang some of us if that helps. If my saving for poor by means I followed is wrong I be punished. Same Lokpal can punish me. Distraction is being manipulated,” she said.
Rajinder Singh, who quit Team Anna recently following differences, urged Team Anna to come clean on the controversy, saying he could not see transparency in the matter as Team Anna preaches.
He alleged that Team Anna could have erred in the matter as they did in plunging into “party politics”. “They preach transparency but in this case, we cannot see any transparency.
They should come clean on this. We are not super humans and we all make mistakes. But the moment you realise it, one should correct it and come out clean.”
“There are doubts about the Hazare movement. A lot of time has been lost before getting things in order. One should come clean as fast as one can because government may use pressure to curb the movement,” Mr Singh said, adding accounts were not discussed in the core committee meetings.
At the same time he said, “They might have erred in this matter like the way they plunged into party politics. All movements are political but taking active part in party politics is a different thing.”
Asked whether the Hazare movement has lost its way, Mr Singh said it started with one particular purpose but now it seems, it has other purposes.
The department has decided to send show-cause notices to those assessees, who have reported “no assets/inadequate assets for recovery”, by this month end asking why their names should not be published and put in the public domain
New Delhi: Stepping up measures to recover over Rs1,00,000 crore of unpaid taxes, the Income Tax (I-T0 department has set up a special cell to track tax payers who are ‘untraceable’ or have reported inadequate assets to pay back tax demands, reports PTI.
The department has also decided to search and approach every possible database or agency, ranging from the Registrar of Companies (RoC), Financial Intelligence Unit, banks to local police stations, municipal authorities and network of informers for any clue about such tax payers.
Various commissioners of the department across the country have also been asked to send quarterly reports of their areas in this regard to the special cell created in the recoveries wing of the department in the National Capital.
“The special cell will liase with all the I-T ranges across the country and obtain data from various government databases. The department will also sift information on such tax payers in its own databases like PAN card and 360-degree profiling,” a senior I-T official said.
The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) in June this year constituted a committee under Director General (Administration) to examine pending cases on I-T demands under the categories “assessees not traceable” and “no assets/ inadequate assets for recovery”.
According to the latest data, I-T demands have been pegged at Rs1,01,836 crore.
The constitution of this committee, which have senior I-T officials from various units including investigation and intelligence, is among the measures the government has taken to fight black money.
The I-T department has recently decided to publish the names of defaulters who owe more than Rs10 crore as unpaid taxes.
The department has decided to send show-cause notices to those assessees, who have reported “no assets/inadequate assets for recovery”, by this month end asking why their names should not be published and put in the public domain.