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It�s a Rs 10,000-cr scam, says accused Saikia

By The Assam Tribune

NEW DELHI, Feb 21 � A key accused in the corporate espionage case Santanu Saikia today claimed that it was a Rs 10,000-crore scam that he was trying to uncover as police said documents seized from corporate executives related to �national security� that can attract Official Secrets Act provisions, reports PTI.

Meanwhile, a local court remanded the five arrested corporate executives in police custody till February 24 for further questioning. Delhi Police also conducted raids here and in nearby Noida looking for stolen documents from offices of petroleum companies.

Saikia, a former journalist, now an energy consultant running a website, claimed to reporters outside a Crime Branch office that it was a Rs 10,000-crore scam, which he was trying to uncover. �Please quote me,� he said as policemen took him in for interrogation.

Reacting to his claim, Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said Saikia was saying such things for covering up his own defence. �Let him spill out all the information he has. The primary accusation is that somebody stole the papers from the ministry. Police is investigating. Anybody has the right to tell everything to the police,� he said.

Pradhan said police is doing an independent job and everything will be clear after investigation. Law will take its course, whoever they may be, he said when asked about the arrest of executives of private companies.

Producing the five corporate executives arrested yesterday before Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Sanjay Khanagwal, the police said, �National interest was taken for a ride in the case. Documents related to national security have also been recovered. This may attract charges under the Official Secrets Act.�

The five accused who were produced in the court are Shailesh Saxena from RIL, Vinay Kumar from Essar, KK Naik from Cairns, Subhash Chandra from Jubilant Energy and Rishi Anand from Reliance ADAG. Saxena is Manager, corporate affairs, Reliance Industries Limited(RIL); Chandra is senior executive, Jubilant Energy; Anand is DGM, Reliance ADAG; Vinay is DGM, Essar and Naik is GM, Cairns India.

Seven people had been arrested earlier.

The police said the documents recovered from the accused showed that the same were perused by their senior officials, who will also be questioned in the case.

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