The PMO is unlikely to get involved in the issue of withdrawal of security clearance given to 33 channels of Sun TV Network, notwithstanding Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi’s opinion favouring a green signal to the media group.
Sources privy to the development said the Prime Minister’s Office was not keen to over-rule the Home Ministry’s decision withdrawing the security clearance given to the Chennai-based media group due to the ongoing criminal probes against promoter Kalanithi Maran and his brother and former Union Minister Dayanidhi Maran.
The PMO is said to be against getting involved in the matter or giving any relief to the Sun TV Network as that may invite judicial scrutiny despite the AG’s opinion favouring security clearance to the group, sources said.
The key reason for the PMO’s unwillingness to get involved in the Sun TV issue is the CBI probe that the Maran brothers were facing over alleged allotment of 300 high-speed BSNL telephone lines to their installations when Dayanidhi Maran was Telecom Minister.
Last week, Dayanidhi Maran was questioned by CBI for a total of 22 hours spread over three days in connection with the case. He also took an interim anticipatory bail to avoid arrest.
There are two other pending criminal probes against Sun TV Network and Kalanithi Maran – CBI’s Aircel-Maxis case and an Enforcement Directorate case of alleged money laundering.
The Home Ministry had last month spiked an Information and Broadcasting Ministry’s proposal for giving security clearance to the 33 channels, a move that could lead to cancellation of their broadcasting licence.