Anil Ambani sees rivals' hand in audit report leak

Anil Ambani sees rivals' hand in audit report leak

RCom shares plunged sharply after “leakage” of the special audit report that allegedly found overstatement of revenues by about Rs 3,000 crore and evasion of over Rs 300 crore in licence fee. Anil Ambani announced that he would approach the authorities against those involved in the campaign.

In a public statement, he said he would ask market regulator Sebi, cyber crime police and accounting regulator ICAI to probe the matter, which he claimed was aimed at creating panic and loss of confidence among the group’s 1.1 crore shareholders.

He said he would also take up with the telecom ministry and others issues raised in the special audit report, adding that if “there are any legitimate dues found payable towards licence fee, RCom shall naturally make payment...”

He alleged that “the special auditors, apparently at the instance of our corporate rivals, have far exceeded their terms of reference and recorded unwarranted and completely incorrect findings on matters beyond the scope of their audit, thereby again demonstrating their bias and prejudice.”

RCom shares have fallen eight per cent in the last three days and 28 per cent in October to close at Rs 229.20 on Thursday. Ambani made a public statement within days of what he called leakage of a report by a government-appointed auditor that alleged overstatement of revenues by about Rs 3,000 crore and evasion of over Rs 300 crore in licence fee by RCom.

He regretted that “over the past few days, a vicious and malafide campaign of falsehoods” has been conducted against the Group. Recalling that a similar campaign was unleashed against another group company Reliance Power when it was launching IPO, Ambani said: “This time too, all these events are being stage-managed and blown out of proportion by our known corporate rivals, at a time when there are important developments concerning our Group.”

Without naming the rivals, he warned: “We are lodging a formal complaint with the cyber crime police authorities to investigate the dissemination of false and malicious e-mails against our group from bogus IDs.” Ambani said rivals were indulging in “nefarious activities” such as circulation of e-mails from false IDs, distribution of papers in unsigned and unmarked envelopes, spreading of false and vicious rumours regarding the company and its employees, drumming up of motivated propaganda and unleashing a campaign of calumny and disinformation. He said the campaign was being orchestrated when the group has filed the draft prospectus for Reliance Infratel IPO.