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The New Companies Bill 2009, which seeks to replace the existing Companies Act of 1956, has already factored in the lessons from the Satyam incident and would look at strengthening the role of Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) in order to arm it with legal and statutory powers to probe corporate misdoings, according to Mr Salman Khurshid, Minister of State for Corporate Affairs.

“The Satyam scam is an aberration in human affairs. Much of what we learnt from the incident has been anticipated in the Bill, we have already taken into account management issues and the task of strengthening the role of SFIO is being looked into,” Mr Khurshid said, while speaking at an interactive session organised by the Indian Chamber of Commerce here on Tuesday. The Bill is awaiting Parliament nod.

Meanwhile, earlier during the day, speaking to newspersons on the sidelines of a Nasscom event, Mr Khurshid said though the Enforcement Directorate and Internal Revenue Services (IRS) report on the Satyam fraud case might take more time, the probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and SFIO were on track.

“The CBI probe will continue irrespective of the IRS report and there is enough evidence with the CBI to proceed in the case.”

The Centre has made a legal request for the IRS intervention, he said, adding that the report may take some more time as information from a number of client countries were to be collected on the issue.

The way the Satyam crisis was handled needs to be considered as an example in years to come, he said, adding, “It was a perfect case of how a keyhole surgery can put things to order.”

On the issue of introducing quotas for the weaker section of population in IT jobs he said, while such a law was unlikely to be passed, it was an issue of aspirations and should be respected by all.


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June 2024