Hyderabad: A special court conducting the trial of the accounting fraud at erstwhile Satyam Computer Services Ltd postponed the verdict to 9 April.

Additional chief metropolitan magistrate B.V.L.N. Chakravarthi on Monday said he needed more time because of voluminous documentation at hand. He was firm that the verdict will be pronounced on 9 April.

The defence counsel were not present in the court on Monday owing to an ongoing lawyers boycott at courts in Hyderabad. Prime accused B. Ramalinga Raju and others were present in the court on Monday.

Chakravarthi instructed, through a representative, the lawyers to be present at the next session.

This is the second time the court postponed the judgment after the earlier verdict date on 23 December.

The CBI has accused former Satyam chairman Ramalinga Raju of inflating revenues, fabricating invoices, falsifying accounts and income-tax returns, and faking fixed deposit receipts in collaboration with some of his key executives, to paint a rosy picture of the company’s financials to deceive the public.

The investigating agency has estimated that the actions of Raju along with the other accused—brothers B. Rama Raju (then managing director of Satyam) and B. Suryanarayana Raju, and some former executives that included former chief financial officer Srinivas Vadlamani, former chief internal auditor V.S. Prabhakar Gupta, G. Ramakrishna, D. Venkatapathi Raju and Ch. Srisailam—have caused a loss of 14,000 crore to Satyam shareholders.

Two former employees of external auditor Price Waterhouse, T.. Srinivas and Subramani Gopalakrishnan, are also standing trial. Price Waterhouse is an affiliate of PricewaterhouseCoopers in India.

Once the poster boy of the Indian outsourcing industry, Raju confessed to fudging Satyam’s accounts to the tune of 7,136 crore in January 2009, a statement he disowned during the trial. A total of 216 witnesses and 3,038 documents were examined during the hearing of the case.

In December, an economic offences court handed Raju and three others—Rama Raju, Srinivas Vadlamani and former whole-time director Ram Mynampati—six months in jail and a fine of 10.5 lakh in six cases filed by the Serious Frauds Investigation Office (SFIO).

Markets regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) barred four former Satyam executives—Ramalinga Raju, Rama Raju, Srinivas and Gupta—from the capital markets for 14 years, and ordered them to cough up 1,848.93 crore with 12% interest from 2009 (totalling about 2,958.29 crore) for pocketing wrongful gains in share transactions. The accused have challenged the Sebi order.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has also filed a chargesheet against 213 people including Raju and 166 firms, including Satyam Computer, under different provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), and attached different properties belonging to them.

Satyam Computer, which plunged into a crisis following Raju’s confession, was nursed back to health by its new owner Tech Mahindra Ltd, which purchased the scandal-ridden firm in 2009 in a government-overseen auction. Tech Mahindra merged Satyam Computer with itself in June 2013, making it the country’s fifth biggest Indian IT services firm.

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