THE CBI has booked NDTV promoters Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy and others for allegedly violating foreign direct investment (FDI) rules in a 2007-09 investment, an allegation denied by the company. Besides the Roys, the agency registered an FIR against then CEO Vikramaditya Chandra as well as unidentified Government officials on charges of criminal conspiracy, cheating and corruption, officials said. On Wednesday, a CBI team conducted searches at Chandra’s residence, officials said.
Under the CBI scanner are investments made by NCBU, a General Electric company at the time, in Network PLC (NNPLC), an NDTV company incorporated in London on November 30, 2006. The CBI has alleged that NNPLC in 2009 got approval from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) board in violation of FDI rules.
It said NNPLC received total FDI worth USD 163.43 million and invested the amount in various NDTV subsidiaries through a web of complex transactions. In a statement, NDTV strongly denied the CBI’s allegations. The FIR is an outcome of a preliminary enquiry registered by the agency in 2016, the CBI officials said.