12 May, 2021

What's Ur Moto?

Telecom giant Motorola faces a probe over bribes it paid to BSNL officials through middlemen and front firms

Jitender Gupta
What's Ur Moto?
How did US multinational telecom giant Motorola, claiming to be a "global corporate citizen dedicated to ethical business practices", manage to bag tenders worth Rs 900 crore for supplying telecom equipment from Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL)? By paying huge bribes to BSNL officials as grease money through middlemen and front organisations, according to what the CBI has found out. In an FIR the bureau filed in September 2003, it cited evidence of Motorola's payoffs being funnelled by middlemen and listed the mnc among its accused. The case, in cold storage for close to six months, has now been revived.

The US-headquartered Motorola Inc primarily develops software to support the telecommunication business. Its Indian arm Motorola India Electronics Pvt Ltd, is a 100 per cent owned subsidiary of Motorola Inc, currently having software centres at Bangalore and Hyderabad.

Under the CBI scanner are certain Swiss bank accounts where one Delhi-based middleman promoting Motorola's interests has parked his money. Says CBI additional director Vijay Shankar Tiwari: "The...

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