Coffee Day Enterprises Ltd on Tuesday said it is aware of reports questioning the authenticity of the signature on the purported letter written by late founder VG Siddhartha and is cooperating with regulatory authorities in this regard.
The purported letter, which is believed to be the final note by the late promoter and widely circulated on social media, contained statements alleging harassment on VG Siddhartha by the Income Tax department.
In a reply to the clarification sought by the bourses on the issue, Coffee Day Enterprises said "the company is aware of the news report" and added that it is "co-operating with regulatory authorities in relation to the letter and related matter."
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On July 30, BSE had sought clarification from Coffee Day Enterprises over reports that Siddhartha's signatures on the purported letter were not matching with his signature on other documents.
VG Siddhartha was confirmed dead on July 31, after his body was found in the Netravati river in Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka, a day after he went missing.
On the same day, Coffee Day Enterprises had named independent director S V Ranganath as the interim chairman of the company.
In the purported letter, dated July 27, 2019 Siddhartha had said there was a lot of harassment from the previous DG of the Income Tax Department in the form of attaching "our shares on two separate occasions to block our Mindtree deal and then taking position of our Coffee Day shares, although revised returns have been filed by us".
"This was very unfair and has led to a serious liquidity crunch," the letter, bearing a purported signature of Siddhartha, had said.
However, the Income Tax Department had last week denied charges of harassment during their probe against Siddhartha and had pointed out that the signatures of the entrepreneur available with them were different from those on a letter being widely published on the social media.
"The authenticity of the note is not known and the signature does not tally with Shri VG Siddhartha's signature as available in his annual reports," the statement from the Income Tax Department had said.
In a press statement issued on July 30, Coffee Day Enterprises had admitted about the purported letter signed by Siddhartha and said that it has shared it with the authorities.
"The board also reviewed a copy of the letter purportedly signed by VG Siddhartha dated July 27, 2019, and has shared a copy of the letter with relevant authorities," it had said.
The statement had further said:"The board has also sought the assistance of local and state authorities, who are doing their utmost, and relevant officers of the company are cooperating with the authorities as requested.
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