Price Waterhouse (PW), the audit arm of international professional services firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), has named two more of its accounting professionals as answerable to the Rs 7,000 crore corporate fraud at Satyam Computer Services, to which its promoter Ramalinga Raju confessed on January 7.
The audit firm has named P Shiva Prasad and C H Ravindranath to the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI), which regulates the profession in India. These names are in addition to its auditors S Gopalakrishnan and Srinivas Talluri, who are under arrest for their alleged role in the Satyam scam.
Price Waterhouse also informed ICAI that only its Bangalore firm was answerable to the allegations. Its other two firms in Delhi and Kolkata were not auditors of Satyam Computer Services, the firm said in its reply to a notice sent by ICAI in January. Price Waterhouse has seven firms registered in India.
On January 24, Gopalakrishnan and Srinivas Talluri were arrested by the Andhra Pradesh police for allegedly colluding with B Ramalinga Raju in fudging the company’s accounts. Gopalakrishnan is a senior council member of ICAI and Srinivas Talluri a member of ICAI.
ICAI can take action against ICAI members and not against the firms.
In another development, ICAI has started disciplinary proceedings against Satyam’s chief financial officer V Srinivas and senior vice-president of the company’s internal audit cell V S Prabhakara Gupta. “We are working on this on a fast-track basis and will come out with a report in six months,” said Uttam Prakash Agarwal, president of ICAI.
Gupta has submitted his written statement and Srinivas has requested for one month to do so. He has been granted an extension till April 9. On being asked if he would be provided a further extension, Agarwal replied that the decision would depend on the situation.