MUMBAI (Reuters) - Malaysia's Maxis Communications Bhd, charged by Indian police in a telecoms scandal, denied any wrongdoing and said it would "vigorously" pursue all available legal remedies to defend itself and one of its directors.
India's Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) filed charges on Friday against a former minister, his media mogul brother and Malaysian tycoon T. Ananda Krishnan over alleged graft to help Maxis take control of an Indian mobile phone carrier in 2006. Krishnan's Usaha Tegas Sdn. Bhd. is the biggest shareholder in Maxis Communications (MCB).
Augustus Ralph Marshall, an MCB director, is also among those charged by Indian police. "MCB categorically denies and rejects any allegation of wrongdoing in this matter," the Malaysian company said in a statement on Tuesday, adding that it would also be seeking protection under an international investment treaty.
"MCB firmly believes that the allegations are totally unfounded and the charge sheet has been filed without basis,"the company said. The charges, which include criminal conspiracy, are over allegations that Dayanidhi Maran, then Indian telecoms minister, helped MCB acquire a majority stake in mobile carrier Aircel eight years ago in return for bribes, police say.
Separately, Astro All Asia Networks Ltd, also named in the CBI charge sheet, denied any wrongdoing. It called the police allegations "totally unfounded and baseless". Ananda Krishnan's Usaha Tegas owns 42.3 per cent of the company.