Didn't force a multi-billionare to sell Aircel: Maran

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Dayanidhi Maran
Chennai, Jun 6: The Union Textile Minister and the former telecom minister, Dayanidhi Maran on Monday, Jun 6 refused all allegations raised by CBI and the former Aircel promoter C Sivasankaran.

Maran, who was accused of forcing Sivasankaran to sell his business to Maxis and allocated 2G spectrum license illegally, has claimed all allegations "baseless". Maran displayed several proofs which can build his innocence in the controversial Aircel-Maxis deal.

The investigative agency Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday grilled Sivasankaran. The former aircel promoter accused Maran of fevering Maxis in allocating 2G spectrum license.

Dishnet Wireless, which later became Aircel, was earlier denied the spectrum license but later when the company was sold to Maxis, Maran allegedly allocated license.

Defending himself, Maran claimed, "No one can armtwist the Sivashankaran. Sivasankaran is a multi-billionare. No one can force him to sell stake. I have never forced anyone to do business with me, he could have gone to court."

Earlier, media reports claimed that Maran has lied by saying that he or his family members never gained any financial benefits during his tenure as a Telecom Minister.

A report aired by Times Now channel alleged that Maran had misused his powers when he was Telecom Minister. According to the IPO prospectus published by Sun TV on Apr 16, 2006, the company intended to enter the telecom sector, which was then controlled by Maran. The report alleged that the Sun TV, which is controlled by Dayanidhi Maran's brother Kalanidhi Maran, gained several benefits as Dayanidhi Maran's name appeared in promoters list.

Earlier while denying the allegations of secret BSNL telephone exchange, Maran said that he "have not done any thing wrong and not benefited anyone" during his tenure as a Telecom minister. But the latest reports clearly shows that Sun TV entered to Telecom sector during the period Maran, who held the telecom ministry from 2004 to 2007.

Further contradicting Maran's claim, the report added that Astro All Asia Networks (owned by Maxis) invested Rs 600 crores and announced joint venture with Sun TV in Apr 2007, when Maran was the Telecom Minister. Maxis gained telecom license for Aircel after investing in Sun TV.

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