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Supreme Court cancels bail of Pricewaterhouse auditor
April, 22nd 2011

The Supreme Court on Thursday cancelled the bail granted by the Andhra Pradesh High Court to Subramani Gopalakrishnan, auditor of Pricewaterhouse, looking after the audit of Satyam Computers, and internal auditor of the company V.S.P. Gupta.

A Bench of Justices P. Sathasivam and B.S. Chauhan cancelled the bail allowing the appeals filed by the CBI against the June 25, 2010 High Court order granting them bail in the Rs.14,000-crore Satyam fraud case.

The Bench directed them to surrender on or before April 30 and issued notice on appeals filed by the CBI.

The Supreme Court, in October 2010, cancelled bail to the accused in the case, B. Ramalinga Raju, B. Rama Raju, V. Srinivas, G. Ramakrishna, Venkatapathi Raju and Ch. Srisailam, and directed the Special Court in Hyderabad to complete the trial by July 31, 2011, failing which the accused would be at liberty to approach the High Court for bail.

Writing the judgment, Justice Sathasivam said: As per the complaint and investigation, these two accused along with the other accused are involved in one of the greatest corporate scams of the commercial world. It has caused a financial storm not only throughout the country but also worldwide and by their action and conduct, lakhs of shareholders and others have been duped and the corporate credibility of the nation has received a serious setback.

The Bench said: It is also brought to our notice that out of 697 witnesses, the prosecution has dropped 470 witnesses and only 227 witnesses are to be examined. Of them, 193 witnesses have already been examined and some of them are to be cross-examined and only 30 more witnesses have to be produced and examined. In view of the directions of this court in the order dated October 26, 2010, the trial is proceeding on a day-to-day basis and likely to be concluded by July 31.

In view of the specific allegation by the prosecution that A4 and A10 were party to the criminal conspiracy showing inflated [non-existent] cash and bank balances reflected in the books, inflated proceeds over a period of last several years, frauds and cooking books of accounts, we are satisfied that the High Court ought not to have granted bail to respondents.

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