Paving the way for Enforcement Directorate (ED) to proceed with the Satyam scam case, the Andhra Pradesh government has issued an order designating a local court trying the multi-crore accounting scandal as the sessions court for the purpose.
As per the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), courts lower than sessions court cannot try cases filed by the Enforcement Directorate.
"In the circumstances explained by the Registrar (Vigilance), High Court of Andhra Pradesh, Hyderabad in the reference read above, government after careful examination of the proposal, hereby designate the XXI Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate's Court, Nampally, Hyderabad as the Sessions Court", the Government Order (GO) issued last week said.
"The Registrar (Vigilance), High Court of Andhra Pradesh, Hyderabad is requested to take necessary action accordingly", it added.
Presently, the case is being tried in the court of the XXI Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate.
Earlier, the ED had urged judicial authorities to designate the same court as the ED court to enable it to file the chargesheet.
The ED, awaiting an administrative decision of the High Court in designating a competent court as a special court for ED cases, is now getting ready to file its chargesheet in the case, sources said.
The accounting scandal had shocked the industry in 2009 when B Ramalinga Raju, the disgraced founder-promoter of Satyam Computer Services (now Mahindra Satyam), wrote letters to stock exchanges confessing that he had manipulated the company's accounts and misled share-holders.
Raju was arrested and the case was subsequently transferred to CBI.
The CBI filed the first chargesheet in 2009 against nine persons including the main accused Ramalinga Raju, his brother B Rama Raju, former chief financial officer V Srinivas and sacked auditors of PricewaterHouse - S Gopalkrishnan and Talluri Srinivas.
The agency filed additional chargesheet in 2010 against six accused including Ramalinga Raju for submitting "false income tax returns".
The Enforcement Directorate had attached assets and properties of Raju and his family members as the part of its probe.