Maxis wants to plead its case in Aircel deal

Maxis wants to plead its case in Aircel deal

With the CBI moving ahead to file a charge sheet in the Aircel-Maxis case, Maxis Communications Bhd has knocked the doors of Finance Minister Arun Jaitley seeking a “fair and unbiased” treatment and an opportunity to plead its case to clear the air.

In its 46-page letter written in July last week, Maxis said the “protracted” investigation has adversely affected its reputation and the value of its investment in India, warranting protection from bilateral investment treaties.

“Maxis is convinced that on a proper and objective analysis of the evidence available to the CBI, the inevitable conclusion is that the investigation should be concluded without any adverse findings against Maxis,” the letter, which has annexed the legal opinions of retired Chief Justices of India  V N Khare and S H Kapadia, said.

While Khare has opined the case of coercion does not appear to be sustainable, Kapadia said there is no coercion under Section 15 of the Indian Contract Act, 1872.

Emphasising that it has cooperated with the investigations, it said, in the same manner that the government of India had given the opportunity to various international strategic investors to plead their case, “we humbly request for a similar opportunity to be accorded to us to give our account of the events and of our investment in Aircel,”.

The Aircel-Maxis case hit the headlines again recently after Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi green-flagged the charging of former telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran and his businessman-brother Kalanidhi in the case. 

Dayanidhi had allegedly forced Aircel owner Sivasankaran to sell his stake in the company to Maxis, owned by Malaysian businessman T Ananda Krishnan. The Malaysian businessman later invested Rs 650 crore in Sun TV network, run by the Marans.

It was also alleged that former finance minister P Chidambaram, who was heading the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB), cleared the takeover violating norms. The Marans and Chidambaram had repeatedly denied any wrongdoings. CBI officials said they would examine all angles before taking any action.

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