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Aircel-Maxis Case: Marans Question CBI Court's Jurisdiction
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Former telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran and his brother Kalanithi Maran on Monday filed separate petitions challenging the jurisdiction of special 2G court to try the Aircel-Maxis deal case in which they have been summand as accused along with others.
Special CBI judge O.P. Saini issued notice to the CBI seeking their response on the pleas field by the Maran brothers on August 3.
During the hearing, the CBI also filed their response on the bail pleas filed by the Maran brothers which will be heard on August 3.
The court also issued fresh summons to the four other accused, Malaysian business tycoon T. Ananda Krishnan, Augustus Ralph Marshall and two accused firms after the CBI said that the summons issued against them have not been served yet.
Senior public prosecutor K.K. Goel told the court that summons to these four accused have not been served yet and they need at least three months time for it.
"We are helpless. We need time. This will be done through diplomatic channel," the prosecutor said.
The court after hearing the submissions posted the matter for August 3 for hearing arguments on the bail pleas of the Maran brothers, their plea challenging the jurisdiction of the court to try the case and the process of serving the summons to Malaysia-based accused.
Maran brothers and authorised representatives of the accused firm Sun Direct TV Pvt Ltd were present in the court during the hearing.
Besides the Maran brothers, Ananda Krishnan and Augustus Ralph Marshall, the court had also summoned four companies - Sun Direct TV Pvt Ltd, Maxis Communication Berhad, South Asia Entertainment Holding Ltd and Astro All Asia Network PLC - as accused in the case.
The court had on October 29 last year summoned all the eight as accused after taking cognisance of the CBI's charge sheet filed in the case.
CBI has listed them in the charge sheet for the offences punishable under section 120-B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC and under relevant provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.
The agency had earlier told the court that five of the eight accused were residing and based in different countries like Malaysia, Mauritius and the UK while the remaining three were based in Chennai.
On August 29 last year, the CBI had filed the charge sheet in the case containing the names of 151 prosecution witnesses and a set of 655 documents, on which it has relied upon during its probe.
CBI had alleged in the court that Dayanidhi Maran had "pressured" and "forced" Chennai-based telecom promoter C Sivasankaran to sell his stakes in Aircel and two subsidiary firms to Malaysian firm Maxis Group in 2006.
It argued that the case involves investigation in foreign countries and there were sufficient grounds to proceed against the accused named in the charge sheet.