A special Central Bureau of Investigation court on Thursday dropped all charges against former Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam leader and Telecom Minister Dayanidhi Maran, his brother Kalanithi and other accused in the Aircel-Maxis case. “Very happy, let me absorb this news. A big moment, let us savour it,” the former minister told ANI. The CBI is expected to challenge the ruling in the Supreme Court, CNBC TV18 reported.
The Aircel-Maxis deal is part of the bigger 2G scam, and investigations into it started in 2015. Officials are looking into how telecom firm Aircel was sold to Maxis. The Enforcement Directorate had said that approval for the deal was given when P Chidambaram was the finance minister in 2006. Dayanidhi Maran had been accused of abusing his official position and causing a loss Rs 1.78 crore to the public exchequer. The CBI, which registered the case in July 2013, had accused Maran of illegally installing at least 364 high-end telecommunication facilities at one of his residences. It was alleged that 323 telephone lines were used to up-link Sun TV, a channel owned by Kalanithi Maran, from Dayanidhi Maran’s residence.
The Enforcement Directorate had chargesheeted the former DMK leader, his brother and sister-in-law Kavery Kalanithi as accused in the case.