Sunday, November 06, 2016

AirAsia India episode reminiscent of Nira Radia tapes

The latest development in the Ratan Tata-Cyrus Mistry corporate battle involving AirAsia India would remind long-time watchers of Indian politics and business of the infamous Nira Radia tapes that dragged the Tata Group into a series of controversies.
The latest revelation by a forensic audit done by Deloitte India that an aide of former CEO Mittu Chandilya was allegedly paid by AirAsia India for arranging meetings with politicians could sting the low-cost carrier for a long time to come.
Incidentally, the report by the auditing firm landed at Cyrus Mistry's desk about 15 days before his ouster as chairman of holding company Tata Sons on October 24 2016.
The audit was initiated by Tata Group's audit committee at the behest of Mistry. Interestingly, in his first salvo after his removal, Mistry had raised the issue of wrongdoings at AirAsia India, including "fraudulent transactions" worth Rs 22 core.
One of the two transactions involved payment of Rs 12.2 crore to a Singapore-based firm HNR Trading, where Rajendra Dubey is a director, for "government/regulatory framework", the Hindustan Times reported, quoting from the report, adding there was "no evidence of actual service provided."
05/11/16 S V Krishnamachari/IBTimes
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