HISTORY OF THE SCAMThe scam caused by the Satyam Computer Services Limited, a leading IT company of India is one among the biggest scandals of a corporate firm in India which caused a huge loss to the investors of about nearly Rs.14, 162 crores. Ramalinga Raju the Chief Executive Officer of Satyam computers is the main accused in the scandal where he along with his family members clipped forbidden money of about Rs.2,743 crores by various immoral and cunning means. The swindling of money was accomplished by increasing the revenue of the company by a large or excessive amount through false sales invoices and also comparable gains has been displayed by forging the bank statements with the assistance of the Statutory and Internal Auditors of the company. For quite a few number of years the company was cheating the public by publishing the company's annual financial statements with an inflated revenue.
A MULTI-DISCIPLANARY INVESTIGATION TEAM (MDIT)This automatically led to an increased price of the Satyam Company's script in the market which in turn tempted the innocent investors to invest in the company. Lot of attempts was made to tuck away the fraud activities of the company. Soon it was taken over by the Central Bureau of Investigation to further probe into the case. The CBI constituted a Multi-Disciplinary Investigation Team (MDIT) to investigate the case. The CBI took exactly 45 days to prepare a thorough report on the case and filed its first charge sheet against the prime accused Ramalinga Raju on grounds of offences of criminal conspiracy, cheating, forgery and falsification of accounts. The CEO of the Satyam Company Ramalinga Raju took ownership of the broad accounting improprieties that overstated the company's revenues and profits and reported a cash holding of approximately $1.04 billion that simply did not exist.
LACK OF AUDIT CONTROLS AND A SYSTEMIC REVIEWA thorough analysis report of Satyam Computer Services Ltd was given by the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) on the swindle of huge amount of money and the act of unscrupulous way of software, and lack of audit controls and systemic review. The fraud activities of Satyam computers took place in three different phases. From 1999 and for at least three years the company successfully drove on the Y2K phenomenon, during which most of the software companies in India did extremely well by getting huge orders and made a good money of it. The second phase of the fraud activities according to the reports submitted by the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO) clearly states that it started in 2001 which witnessed the falsification of accounts so as to keep the share price of Satyam computers quite high. The company had already gone public in the year 1992 itself.
THE REPORT PRODUCED BY SFIO
As a result of the Satyam promoters going on a high price in the share market it was decided by the Satyam promoters to offload their shareholding in the market and to further go ahead in the buying of land. The report produced by SFIO has also mentioned that the founder B. Ramalinga Raju had set up as many as 374 infrastructure firms and eight investment companies which would aid him to become a tycoon of land promoters. It was only after this phase which ended up in the year 2004 that things started working in the wrong way. The third and final phase for the Satyam Computers started in mid -2007 during which the company showed huge cash balances and fixed deposits in several banks of international repute. But the actual scene was that the company was starved of funds and the promoters were trying all their best to keep the company from sinking or afloat. An anonymous email was received by one of the independent director Krishna Palepu which was just two days after the board meeting of the Satyam group during which they decided to buy two group firms-Maytas Infra Ltd and Maytas Properties Ltd.
THE ORGANIZATION ENGAGED IN AN UNLAWFUL OR IMMORAL ACTIVITY
The writer went by an alias, Joseph Abraham, and has been declared the whistle blower in the case who informed the knowing of the organization engaged in an unlawful or immoral activity. This email laid bare the fraud. Palepu forwarded the email to another independent director, M. Rammohan Rao, who chaired the Satyam audit committee. Rao forwarded this email to S. Gopalakrishnan, partner at Price Waterhouse, the company's auditors. Gopalakrishnan told Rao over phone that there was no truth to the allegations and assured him of a detailed reply in a proposed presentation before the audit committee on 29 December. The meeting however never took place at all for before that the CEO Ramalinga Raju was clear that the clock was ticking for that audit meeting could have seen the committee members pose tough questions. Raju had not taken Rao's calls seeking an answer to the allegations in the whistle blower's email.
INVESTIGATION REPORTAt the time of Satyam scandal it was even compared with that of the Enron scandal of US by the analysts. Some social commentators see it more as a part of a broader problem relating to India's caste-based, family-owned corporate environment. The whole of the corporate community was taken aback when the scandal of Satyam Company was brought into light and the chairman Ramalinga Raju resigned on 7 January, 2009 and disclosed that he had manipulated the accounts by US$1.47-Billion. The auditors of the Satyam Company played a major role in the scandal and at the time of the breaking news of the scandal the permit's auditor of Satyam Computer Services was Pricewaterhouse Coopers. The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) charged the Indian arm of Pricewaterhouse Coopers with an amount of nearly $6 million for the reason of not following code of conduct and auditing standards in the performance of its duties related to the auditing of the accounts of Satyam Computer Services.
BAIL FOR THE CHAIRMAN OF SATYAM COMPUTERSThe Supreme Court granted bail for the chairman of Satyam Computers along with two other main accused on November 4th, 2011 for the reason that the Central Bureau of Investigation failed to file a charge sheet against the accused even after a period of 33 months Ramalinga Raju being arrested. Maytas situation was addressed by a specially appointed task force by the CEO Ramalinga Raju just before few days before he revealed the news of the accounting fraud. Once the scandal was out in the light, Ram Mynampati was elected as the interim CEO of the Satyam Computers by the then board members. The Crime Investigation Department (CID) conducted a probing session with the then CFO of Satyam namely, Vadlamani Srinivas and later he was arrested and was kept in judicial custody. Immediately on January 11th, 2009, the government took steps to appoint or nominate a team of new members to the Satyam boars and they were a noted banker Deepak Parekh, former NASSCOM chief Kiran Karnik and former SEBI member C Achuthan to Satyam's board.
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