Satyam's Ramalinga Raju anticipates verdict, ready to pursue long legal battle
Raju and the nine others accused in the alleged accounting fraud have hired some of the country’s most high-profile legal experts to argue their cases.
Special judge BVLN Chakravarti is expected to pronounce the verdict over the next few weeks. A management graduate from Ohio University, Raju has already spent over 30 months in jail after he was arrested for confessing in January 2009 to cooking the books to the tune of Rs7,139 crore at what was then India’s fourth-largest software firm. During the course of the trial, Raju retracted his confession and challenged the charges against him by the investigators. Satyam has been rechristened Tech Mahindra after the Mahindra group acquired it.
“Raju did not siphon off funds and he is exploring all the available legal options to contest the trial court’s verdict in case it convicts him,” said a legal adviser to Raju on condition of anonymity. The same advisor said the appeal options before Raju include the district court, high court and apex court in that order, implying a longdrawn legal battle involving years of proceedings.
Raju, who spent most of the last few years battling the charges against him, has also been trying to clear financial hurdles at his family’s firms and fighting to claim Rs1,230 crore of dues from Tech Mahindra, said his legal advisor. Raju family members still own sizeable stakes in Maytas Infra and Maytas Properties, now controlled by the engineering and construction firm IL&FS.
He underwent angioplasty during his early days in jail prolonged treatment for Hepatitis C. Raju has mostly recovered from the health problems, said a family friend who did not want to be identified. “Raju appears a relieved man now after having sorted out most of the issues pertaining to family-owned businesses and also initiating steps to liquidate his family members’ investments in various businesses.”