Satyam Leader Claims Heart Not Up To Polygraph

Attorneys for outsourcer's disgraced chairman say he's not healthy enough for a lie detector test.
Former Satyam chairman Ramalinga Raju claims that he's suffering from cardiac problems that render him unfit to take lie detector tests that authorities hope will help them uncover the true extent of accounting fraud at the company.

Raju's legal reps made the claim in responding to the Indian Central Bureau of Investigation's request that Raju make himself available for polygraph testing, according to India's Business Standard newspaper.

Raju's team also argued that the founder and former chairman of Satyam needn't submit to further questioning because he has already been charged and that the CBI has completed its investigation.

Raju has admitted falsifying Satyam's cash position by as much as $1 billion while overstating quarterly earnings and revenue by up to 28%. Satyam may also have faked employee numbers and other data.

Meanwhile, the integration of Satyam and buyer Tech Mahindra is moving forward.

Executives from Tech Mahindra said Monday that they planned to operate Satyam as a standalone enterprise headed by its current leadership once their $422 million acquisition is complete.

Still up for discussion is a range of key issues.

Integration plans, a possible reduction in Satyam's 50,000-employee head count, and facilities consolidation are some of the matters that Tech Mahindra will need to address as it proceeds with the takeover.

The fate of Satyam's tainted brand name is also on the table. Tech Mahindra, a relative unknown outside the telecom outsourcing arena, may want to keep the brand in order to maintain some name recognition among potential customers. On the other hand, the Satyam brand is now forever associated with one of the biggest financial frauds in India's history.

Earlier this week, Tech Mahindra deposited into escrow $351 million to secure the purchase agreement. The company is backed by Indian manufacturing giant Mahindra & Mahindra and British Telecom.

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