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TN anti-corruption bureau can probe Cognizant paying bribe to TN officials

Chennai

16-February-2019

Even though Cognizant Technology Solutions has resolved with the US authorities the case of bribing Tamil Nadu government officials with $2 million, the Directorate of Vigilance & Anti-Corruption (DVAC) can start a probe to find out the corrupt officials, said serving and a retired top official of DVAC.

According to a DVAC official, the agency can probe the issue.

"Even a press report is enough for us to look into the matter. In the Cognizant case, we will have to see the US court order. We will also have to get the government permission to proceed further into the issue," said a DVAC official.

"It is not mandatory for DVAC to wait for a formal complaint to start an inquiry. Any credible information is enough to start an initial probe. So even a newspaper report is an information for DVAC. In such a situation, the DVAC Director can call for records, peruse, assess and proceed with future course of action," S.K. Dogra, former DVAC Director, told IANS.

"The DVAC head can proceed on a matter like this in consultation with the Vigilance Commissioner in the state if facts of the case so warrant."

In a statement Cognizant said it has agreed to settle the case of bribing Tamil Nadu government officials by agreeing to pay about $28 million (about Rs 200 crore) to the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and US Securities Exchange Commission (SEC).

Bribing of foreign government officials is an offence in the US under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

"In total, the resolutions require the company to pay approximately $28 million to the DOJ and SEC. This amount is consistent with the accrual previously recorded by the company," Cognizant said.-IANS