AirAsia Group denies wrongdoing

In a statement, the AirAsia Group said it "vigorously" denies all accusations and contentions, and believe that these "trumped up accusations are baseless and motivated by considerations that as yet remain unknown". Reuters file photo

AirAsia Group and AirAsia India director R Venkataraman on Wednesday denied any wrongdoing in connection with accusations that they sought to illegally change aviation regulations for their no-frills airline, describing it "baseless".

While AirAsia Group described it as "trumped up accusations", which are "baseless and motivated by considerations that as yet remain unknown", Venkataraman claimed that it found their root in "baseless" allegations made by former Tata Sons chairman Cyrus P Mistry and the Shapoor Pallonji Group against Tata Trusts Trustees and Tata Sons in his "revenge" legal actions.

In a statement to Bursa Malaysia Securities Berhad, the Malaysian stock exchange, the AirAsia Group said it "vigorously" denies all accusations and contentions, and believe that these "trumped up accusations are baseless and motivated by considerations that as yet remain unknown".

It said the allegations concerning indirect foreign control of AirAsia India have been fully investigated and the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) had "effectively" ruled that its operations and management was in accordance with FEMA (Foreign Exchange Management Act) as well as FDI (Foreign Direct Investment) regulations.

Completely denying the accusations, it said, "Legal action to protect AirAsia and its interests against these allegations will be taken against any person who is known to have maliciously and frivolously instigated, and or smeared the good reputation of individuals and shareholders of AAIL."

In a separate statement, Venkataramanan said he has been "wrongly named as an accused" on operational matters where he had "little or no role to play".

He pointed fingers at Mistry, who had an ignominious exit from the Tatas and his family-promoted Shapoor Pallonji Group.

"Emails purportedly written by me have been circulated in the media in the context of the issue of 5/20 in the aviation sector. This has been a much-debated policy matter and Air Asia India was one of the many airlines that had formally sought a review of this policy," he said.

"These motivated allegations are part of the smear campaign run to discredit me and the work being done by the Tata Trusts, which contribute Rs 1,200 crore each year to philanthropic activities. Despite, Cyrus Mistry and his company's efforts to discredit the Trusts, we resolve to enhance the quality of life of our people," he added. 

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AirAsia Group denies wrongdoing

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