Aditya Birla Group on Friday said it donated funds to political outfits through a trust for around 15 years and that these were done within permissible limits of the country's laws.
"...we wish to state that the Trust was set by some of our Group companies for making donations to political parties after the Companies Act was amended, permitting such contributions," the Group, now being probed for its alleged involvement in a coal block allocation matter, said in a release.
The group has denied any wrongdoing in coal allocation matter. The group's statement came after media reports that CBI, during search operations in its offices, had recovered a diary containing records of nearly 1,000 payments made to politicians and MPs by the trust.
"The contributing companies after serious deliberations and based on the best international practice in this regard, decided to create a trust called 'General Electoral Trust' in 1998.
"Its sole purpose is of making contributions to various political parties/individuals, nominated by political parties and to independent candidates standing for parliamentary or state assembly elections," Aditya Birla Group said.
The trust, a non-profit organisation, made political contributions only to those political parties/candidates who were registered with Election Commission of India. "All contributions are duly accounted for and reflected in the audited published accounts of the contributing companies," the group said.
The trustees, it said, are independent persons of repute such as retired Mumbai Police Commissioner J F Ribero and former IDBI Chairman G P Gupta.