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2G scam: CBI to probe death of Raja aide Batcha
Sadiq Batcha as found dead under mysterious circumstances in his Chennai home on March 16.
New Delhi: The mysterious death of Sadiq Batcha, considered to be a key aide of former telecom minister and 2G scam accused A Raja, is to be investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The CBI told the Supreme Court on Friday that it would take over the investigation into the death of Batcha.
The CBI had questioned him in connection with 2G spectrum scam on February 24, 2011. He was likely to be questioned by the CBI again in the case but was found dead under mysterious circumstances in his Chennai home on March 16.
A suicide note allegedly written by him was also recovered by the police. A saree seller turned right hand man of Raja, 37-year-old Batcha's end came as suddenly as his rise from rags to riches.
Batcha was the managing director of Green House promoters - one of the companies which CBI believes was a front for A Raja - where possibly the bribe money from 2G licenses was routed. Batcha was last questioned in this regard by the CBI on February 24, two months after his premises was raided.
Batcha's wife has already lodged a police complaint alleging that he was under mental pressure because of 2G investigations.
Raja's wife MA Parameshwari was a director in Green House Promoters.
However, CBI officials have claimed that Batcha's death would not hamper investigation as he was just a suspect but not a key player.
Investigators suspected that Batcha floated Green House Promoters to bring in the bribe money. Batcha hailed from Raja's hometown of Peramballur and. His Chennai-based offices and residence has been raided by the CBI on December 15, 2010 in connection with the 2G scam.
Green House was setup in August 2004, just a few weeks after Raja became environment minister in UPA-1.
In 2007, as Raja became the telecom minister, Green House opened its branch in Singapore. The CBI was investigating whether Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) and Reserve Bank of India guidelines were followed for setting up the foreign arm and subsequent money transfers between the company and its Singapore arm.
Investigating agencies were also looking into how a company that was formed with a capital of Rs 1 lakh in 2004 soared to revenues of over Rs 600 crore in just five years.
Even as Chennai police investigates how Batcha died, the CBI has assured that his death will not hamper investigations in the 2G case. CBI says all evidence related to Batcha were collected and recorded but real extent of damage done will only be known on March 31 when the chargesheet in the 2G case is filed.
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