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Chitrakala: MIED case: Prepare for 'Tamil movie' thriller

Contributed by Anonymous on Tuesday, May 11 @ 04:35:24 CDT

MIC
freemalaysiatoday.com, May 11 2010

/* */
By M Kumaran and RK Anand KUALA LUMPUR: The case involving P Chitrakala Vasu, the former chief excecutive officer of MIC's education flagship, is set to be a thriller, with many luminaries expected to be put in the dock.


Observers told FMT that the looming court battle with regard to the Maju Institute for Education Development (MIED) would “open a can of worms”. “This is a Tamil movie thriller with all the right kind of 'masala' (hit-making ingredients),” exclaimed an MIC source, who could not contain his excitement. He also pointed out that with the case, MIED's “closely guarded” procedures would also come out into the open. And according to him, Chitrakala herself has been looking foward for this opportunity in order to reveal all. “Since the scandal erupted, she has complained of not being given a proper platform to clear her name, especially on the accusations levelled against her by the MIC president (S Samy Vellu). “If you remember, the president, who was very fond of her at one time, had branded her a liar and a thief. She is a bold woman and she's going to use the courtroom to spill all the beans,” he added. RM4 million 'cheating' case This morning, Chitrakala, 39, was charged with three counts of cheating to the tune of RM4 million at the Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court. She was accused of cheating former MIC treasurer-general M Mahalingam, 74, who was a director and signatory of MIED Sdn Bhd, by inducing him to sign three cheques for RM1 million, RM1 million and RM2 million. Chitrakala has claimed trial, and the case is up for mention on June 14. Samy Vellu and other MIC bigwigs such as former vice-president S Sothinathan and education bureau chief Prof T Marimuthu are expected to take the stand. Marimuthu is one of the three signatories for the issuance of MIED checques, the other two being Mahalingam and Samy Vellu. Enter the 'powers that be' Legal experts also pointed out that the courtroom battle could take years on the ground of appeals being filed with the higher courts. This, said MIC sources, would be bad for both the party and its president's reputation. Meanwhile, the sources also claimed that the “powers that be” were attempting to use this court battle to apply greater pressure on Samy Vellu to make an early exit from the helm. “It is an open secret that some parties in BN (Barisan Nasional) want him out. They see him as a stumbling block to winning back Indian votes,” said a source. Previously, there have been news reports claiming that Prime Minister NajibTun Razak and Umno have been pushing the MIC president for a transition plan. Sothinathan: 'Long overdue' In a related development, Sothinathan told FMT that he welcomed the move to charge Chitrakala, but felt that it was “long overdue”. “The report was filed in 2008. I believe the authorities must have carried out a very extensive investigation into the matter before taking the appropriate action,” he said. Since the case involved public funds, the former deputy minister stressed that the court process should be expedited. Despite the many issues which might crop up during the course of the trial, Sothinathan believes that the process is good for MIC. “A wrong is a wrong, and those who commit an offence must be brought to book. But we should refrain from (spreading) rumours and allow the court to do its work,” he said. Sothinathan, who got the ball rolling when he lodged a police report on missing MIED files, is also prepared to be called in to testify at the trial. “I would give my fullest cooperation,” he said. On the other hand, MIC Youth adviser S Vell Paari was unfazed about being summoned to take the stand as speculated by Tamil dailies. “This would not be the first time that I am asked to come to court, and I am sure it would not be the last either,” he quipped. “So I am prepared.” Vell Paari, who is Samy Vellu's son, told FMT that the trial would help clear the air on the MIED issue. “Everybody tried to paint a different picture. The whole thing was made to look in a way to damage MIC and MIED. This (the trial) is a good thing,” he said.

******
NST

Ex-MIED officer pleads not guilty to cheating charges
2010/05/12
KUALA LUMPUR: Former Maju Institute of Educational Development (MIED) chief executive officer P. Chithirakala Vasu claimed trial at the Sessions Court yesterday to three counts of cheating amounting to RM4 million. She was alleged to have deceived MIED's former director Tan Sri M. Mahalingam, 74, a MIED Capital Sdn Bhd cheque signatory, into believing that three cheques amounting to RM4 million were paid to lawyer Tan Sri Abdul Rashid Manaf, 64, as a loan repayment.

The cheques, however, were made out to two companies -- Silver Line Services Sdn Bhd and Wira Jernish Sdn Bhd -- which belonged to Chithirakala, 39, and her husband.

The offences were allegedly committed at the MIED office premises in Menara Manickavasagam here on Jan 9, Jan 30 and May 3, 2007.

Each offence carried a maximum jail term of 10 years and fine.

Deputy public prosecutor Kevin Morais from the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) proposed bail at RM30,000 with one surety for all the charges.
Counsel Saseedharan Menon, however, pleaded to the court to lower the bail to RM20,000 as Chithirakala had cooperated with the police and the MACC during investigations.

Judge Azizah Mahamud maintained the RM30,000 bail with one surety offered by the prosecution for all the charges and fixed June 14 for mention.

Chithirakala was the chief executive officer of MIED, an education arm of MIC which was involved in giving out scholarships for needy Indian students, as well as the main body which oversaw the party's AIMST University.


Correction

P. CHITHIRAKALA, the former chief executive officer of the Maju Institute of Educational Development (MIED) was arrested by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission in Putrajaya on Monday.

She was initially told to report to the MACC headquarters in Putrajaya for an interview but was later arrested for alleged mismanagement of funds and cheating.

It was reported in the New Straits Times that she had been arrested by a team of policemen from Bukit Aman. The error is regretted.

 
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