Two days after taking over the case on the biggest corporate scam to hit India, the CBI on Friday registered an FIR against Satyam founder B Ramalinga Raju and other company officials and set up a 15-member team consisting of police officials and chartered accountants to crack the case.
Only Raju, the founder and the ex-chairman of the IT firm, is named in the FIR under sections of the IPC related to cheating and forgery. The CBI FIR mentions directors and auditors but does not name them. The names are expected to be added as the investigating agency unravels the scam.
One of the key aspects of the CBI investigation will be to find out how many of Satyams former directors were involved in the scam and the role of auditors who failed to report discrepancies as Raju allegedly cooked the books and inflated profits for several years.
The CBI registered a FIR against B Ramalinga Raju, the then chairman of Satyam Computer, directors and auditors of Satyam and others and has taken up investigation of the case from CB (crime branch) CID, Andhra Pradesh, a CBI statement said.
The case against them was registered under various IPC sections from 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 409 (criminal breach of trust), 420 (cheating), 467 and 468 (forgery), 471 (using forged document as genuine) to 477-A (falsification of accounts).
The investigating agency is calling it a `unique accounting fraud and even the strength of the investigating team reflects the uniqueness of the case. A 15-member multi-disciplinary investigation team, which is headed by CBI DIG in Hyderabad V V Lakshmi Narayana, will carry out a thorough probe into the Satyam scam, a CBI press release said.
The team consists of officers from different branches in CBI, a superintendent of police, an official from the Bank Securities and Fraud Cell and assistant general manager of the State Bank of India who is on deputation to the CBI.
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) has nominated five experienced Chartered Accountants to be part of this team while the Institute of Cost and Works Accountants of India (ICWAI) has also agreed to nominate two of its officers to the team, the CBI said.
In order to show that the government is taking the investigation of this case seriously, the CBI has been assured of full cooperation from ministries and institutes. The CBI statement said that the Cabinet Secretariat has promised to provide the needed support to the CBI in investigating the case.
All departments, ministries and institutions like the Securities and Exchange Board of India, Registrar of Companies, Serious Fraud Investigation Office, Enforcement Directorate and Income Tax have all been asked to extend help, when needed, to the multi-disciplinary investigation team.
The revenue department of the Andhra Pradesh government has also nominated an officer to liaise with this case. On Friday, the Andhra Pradesh high court has also passed an order to provide logistics and other necessary assistance to CBI for this case.