V Ravi Prakash, the former CEO of TV9, was arrested by officials of Banjara Hills Police Station on Saturday for allegedly withdrawing over Rs 18 crore from Associated Broadcasting Company Private Limited (ABCL) which promotes TV9.
TV9 was taken over by ABCL, owned by businessman Jupally Rameshwar Rao of the My Home Group, last August. and Prakash, who owns 8.25 per cent stake, was ousted as CEO.
On September 24, the new board of directors lodged a complaint against Prakash alleging that he and former director MKVN Murthy withdrew Rs 18,31,75,000 between September 2018 and May 2019 as bonus or ex-gratia payments to themselves.
“During the verification of records and account statements since June 2019 by new Board of Directors, it has come to light that directors V Ravi Prakash, MKVN Murthy and Clifford Pereira fraudulently have drawn huge sums from the bank accounts of the company without substantiating any entitlement under law, without following the prescribed procedure and without providing any calculations thereof and proper approval of directors / shareholders which amounts to cheating, gross misappropriation of funds, causing wrongful loss to the company and thereby getting personal benefit at the cost of the company. We request for investigation and taking necessary action,’’ the complaint submitted at Banjara Hills Police Station states.
Officials from the Banjara Hills Police Station, which took up the investigation, had summoned Prakash twice to record his statement, but he had ignored both notices.
On Saturday afternoon, the police went to Prakash’s house and took him into custody. He was brought to the police station in his car, which was also seized, for questioning.