Satyam scam now at Rs 24,000 crore & counting

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Old 19-Aug-2010
Post Satyam scam now at Rs 24,000 crore & counting

It's going to be a long wait before Ramalinga Raju is brought to justice that is if at all. Those in the know of things reckon that it will be at least two years before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) gets all the answers that it has sought in letters rogatory sent to 60 countries.

Basically, the ED wants to know whether Raju and his aides have swindled Satyam's accounts overseas and kept the moolah there. Only after the replies, can it file a chargesheet in the special court set up to try Raju related cases.

The charges against Raju continue to pile up. In his infamous "can't get off the tiger that I rode" letter, Raju had confessed to cooking books of Satyam to the tune of Rs 5,361 crore. The CBI in its chargesheet it has filed three till now raised the scam figure to Rs 7,000 crore.

But now it says Satyam was a much higher Rs 24,000 crore scandal. When Justice Raja Elanago wondered in open court on Wednesday how there was not much hue and cry when the scam was so big, the CBI counsel said the new figure had just been arrived at. This after procuring material evidence of forgeries in fixed deposits of Satyam in New York banks.

"We are nowhere near unravelling the total magnitude of the scam. It will take months, the overseas dimension of the case is the problem," said an investigator.

However, regarding operations in the country, the investigators have had better luck. The CBI has traced more than 400 fictitious companies floated by Raju and his associates for the purpose of diverting the (alleged) proceeds of crime. The CBI believes that it has nailed most of the real estate deals struck by Raju through these fictitious entities. Nearly 2,000 acres of land acquired by Raju and family with these proceeds have also been identified.

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