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Satyam accounting fraud is turning murkier
December, 03rd 2009

The Rs 7,800-crore accounting fraud of Satyam Computer Services Ltd., now rebranded as Mahindra Satyam, is turning murkier. The CBI found that the fraud has come into being from April 1999 as opposed to 2001 considered earlier. The CBI, in its supplementary chargesheet filed on November 24 at the XIV Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate court, furnished evidence stating that the fraud actually started in 1999 and hence the fraud period is now being treated from April 1999 to December 2008. As a result, the process of restating books of accounts is likely to get delayed further.

According to the CBI chargesheet, a copy of which is available with Express, reveals that the accused - B Ramalinga Raju, Rama Raju and Suryanarayana Raju - have diverted Rs 72.5 lakh from Satyams accounts into family concerns - Elem Investment Co, Fincity Investment Co, Hi-Grace Investment Co, - during April, 1999. It further states that the diversion of funds took place without seeking necessary authorisations from the companys board. Besides, the accused have wrongly reflected the fund diversion as a provision for doubtful advances.

From this, it is clear that the fraud has come into being from April 1999 itself. Therefore, the fraud period is now being treated as from April 1999 to December, 2008, said the report.

With the CBI broadening the fraud period, auditing firms Deloitte and KPMG, which were mandated by the then Government-appointed board members of Satyam to restate accounts, may have to borrow additional time to complete the process.

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