Tamil NGO denies links with spectrum scam

Thursday, December 16, 2010

CHENNAI - The founder of an NGO linked to DMK MP Kanimozhi that was raided by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) insisted Thursday that it did not receive any money linked to the 2G spectrum scandal.

Jegath Gaspar Raj told a news conference here that he strongly condemned insinuations that the scam money may have been routed to Tamil Maiyam.

“Our books are clean and credible. We are not afraid,” Gaspar Raj said at his office in the heart of Chennai.

“We are functioning in a rented place. We only have a certain amount of stabliity fund to pay our employees. Tamil Maiyam has no material assets except this rented office… We do not even have a vehicle.”

Gaspar Raj said his NGO, which seeks to promote Tamil art and culture, took money for sponsorship of events from companies and these were always made public.

He said the raid Wednesday by the CBI on Tamil Maiyam had raised doubts about the group’s credibility. “We are deeply pained to note that we are unfairly targeted.”

Asked about his close relations with leaders of Tamil Nadu’s ruling DMK, including disgraced former communications minister A. Raja and Kanimozhi, he said he was not claiming that no spectrum scam took place.

Kanimozhi, daughter of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi, is on the board of Tamil Maiyam.

Gaspar Raj said he was only opposed to a media trial of Raja, who was last month forced to quit the cabinet over charges that his allotment of second generation spectrum had caused huge losses to the government.

“We did not get any spectrum money… The only reason we are being targeted for a search like this and creating an opinion like this is because of our association with individuals who are politicians,” he said.

He said the CBI wanted to “see our accounts and the communications we have with people. So we made them available. They were able to take a copy of all our accounts”.

Gaspar Raj said the CBI officials did not ask any questions related to the spectrum scandal.

“They (officials) were very polite, very decent, very methodical, absolutely dignified. And we were very cooperative.”

Asked if he was a supporter of Sri Lanka’s now vanquished Tamil Tigers, Gaspar Raj said: “I am a sympathiser of the cause of Tamil Eelam people.”

The raid on Tamil Maiyam coincided with simultaneous searches of homes and offices in New Delhi, Noida and Tamil Nadu, all linked to the raging spectrum scandal.

Filed under: Religion

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