PM and PC too involved in 2G scam - A.Raja says in court
2G Spectrum Scam has costed Indian Rs. 1,760,000,000,000 (1.76 Lac Cr.)
PM & Home minister PC to involved in 2G scam - Raja says in court
Says FM Cleared Sale Of Stake By Telcos In Singh’s Presence
New Delhi: Jailed former telecom minister A Raja on Monday sought to drag Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and home minister P Chidambaram into the political-legal quagmire of the spectrum scam, saying they were party to the decision to allow telecom firms that got 2G licences to sell equity for large profits.
“Telenor buying a stake in Unitech Wireless and Etisalat buying a stake in Swan Telecom—the then finance minister (Chidambaram) approved it in the presence of the Prime
Minister,” Raja’s counsel Sushil Kumar told special CBI judge O P Saini, creating a flutter in court and providing the main opposition BJP a fresh opportunity to attack the government.
Arguing for Raja’s release on bail, Kumar said if he were to be held guilty so should all his predecessors in the telecom ministry. He also accused the CBI of being selective in prosecuting telecom companies in connection with the scam, saying that while Unitech and Swan were targeted for selling their equity, Tata Teleservices and S-Tel, which also did the same, had been spared.
“The matter (about sale of equity by spectrum licensees) was discussed between prime minister and the then finance minister (P Chidambaram). The then finance minister who is now home minister had said in front of the prime minister that dilution of shares does not amount to sale of 2G licence as per corporate law,” Raja said.
“When sale of equity does not amount to sale of licence there is no question of earning profit. How then can there be corruption in this regard?” Kumar argued as he pleaded for Raja’s release on bail. Later, the government argued that manipulation of licence allocation, not sale of equity, was at the centre of the CBI’s probe.
The telecom companies’ success in mopping up thousands of crores by offering fresh equity for licences and spectrum they got from Raja for around Rs 1,600 crore forms the basis of the charge that the scam caused a huge loss of revenue to the government. It is also the main ground on which the CAG and the CBI had based their estimates of actual value of spectrum. Swan and Unitech between them raised Rs 7,100 crore for Uninor and Etisalat respectively in exchange for fresh equity.
‘If I’m wrong, all ex-telecom ministers must also be jailed’
The burden of Raja’s argument in the court on Monday was that he was merely implementing a policy that was found to be kosher by both the PM and Chidambaram. The reference to the role of the PM and finance minister had been anticipated, with clear indications that Raja would ramp up his defence. The BJP, again predictably, jumped on the opportunity, with Nitin Gadkari alleging that the government was involved in the scam.
Raja said he “only inherited and didn’t create policy”, pointing out that his predecessors, including those from the NDA government, didn’t auction spectrum. “If the policy pursued by me was wrong, then all former telecom ministers since 1993 should also be in jail with me,” he said, opposing the framing of charges. “Arun Shourie distributed 26 licences while Dayanidhi Maran distributed 25 and I (Raja) distributed 122 licences. It is to be noted that none of them auctioned spectrum,” he said. He said: “If I am following the law; I am not liable to be prosecuted. In fact, I should be rewarded.”Alleging that the CBI had engaged in a “pick-and-choose policy”, Raja questioned the logic behind booking certain corporates while leaving out others. “The CBI says when DB Realty gave its shares (in Swan Telecom), it amounted to sale and so is the case with Unitech (Wireless). But when Tata Teleservices give its shares to bring in FDI, it does not amount to sale.”
Raja’s counsel asked, “Who is a better businessman—Sanjay Chandra of Unitech or Ratan Tata of Tata Teleservices? And then they say we kept them (Tata) out of Delhi circle.” He also pointed out, “STel also earned Rs 2,230 crore by diluting its shares but that was not considered as sale by the CBI.”
“How could you give my custody to CBI for my further interrogation regarding Loop which was given 21 licences in the same batch as the other coaccused (Swan Telecom and Unitech Wireless).”
The then FM (finance minister P chidambaram) had told the PM
that dilution of shares did not
amount to sale of 2G licence. When sale of equity does not amount to sale of licence, there is no question of earning profit. How then can there be corruption? As per CBI’s pickand-choose policy, when DB Realty gave its shares (in Swan) to bring in money, it meant a sale. Ditto with Unitech. But when Tata Teleservices gave its shares to bring in FDI, it didn’t amount to a sale —EX-TELECOM MINISTER A RAJA’S DEFENCE
Re: PM and PC too involved in 2G scam - A Raja says in court
2G scam: A Raja continues his attack on the PM
NEW DELHI: Hours after saying that he did not seek to implicate Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and former finance minister P Chidambaram in the 2G spectrum case, former telecom minister A Raja on Tuesday once again blamed the Prime Minister for not forming a Group of Ministers (GoM) to examine the issues related to 2G spectrum allocation.
Raja told a special court in Delhi that he had sent back the 2G file to Manmohan Singh and the latter should have called for a GoM if he had found any discrepancies.
"The Prime Minister is superior to me and he could have constituted the GoM," said Raja.
Raja also demanded summoning of the Attorney General as a witness in the case.
Earlier today, Raja pleaded before a court that the then finance minister P Chidambaram be made a witness in the 2G spectrum case and suggested he had not sought to implicate Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the home minister in the matter.
The 47-year-old DMK MP, who is behind bars for nearly six months, also sought his "forthwith release" terming his judicial custody as an "illegal detention."
Raja's counsel Sushil Kumar made the submissions before Special Judge O P Saini while opposing the framing of corruption and other penal charges against him for his alleged role in the scam on the second day of arguments.
Seeking a direction to CBI to make Chidambaram a witness in the case, Raja said the former finance minister was privy to the matter relating to dilution of equities by Swan Telecom and Unitech Wireless to foreign firms, Etisalat and Telenor, respectively.
"The matters relating to dilution of equities to foreign firms by Swan Telecom and Unitech Wireless were known to the Prime Minister and then finance minister Chidambaram," Raja said.
Raja clarified that his statement yesterday about Manmohan Singh and Chidambaram being aware of the dilution of shares by telecom firms did not amount to making any allegation against them.
"I am defending myself and not accusing anything against anybody. I am not after anybody," he said.
"I did not seek to implicate the Prime Minister and the then finance minister in the 2G case," Raja said while attempting to shift the blame on media.
"They (media) cannot put words in my mouth. Ask them to report truthfully or go out of the court room," he said.
In the USA, the court proceedings are telecast live and the whole nation watches them to avoid such a situation, Raja said while accusing the media of misreporting.
Raja had yesterday told the court that "the then finance minister, who is now the Home Minister, had said in front of the Prime Minister that dilution of shares does not amount to the sale of 2G licence as per the corporate law."
"Let the Prime Minister deny this," he added.
Raja today also questioned the "presumptive loss" worth Rs 1.76 lakh crore assessed by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) in its report and termed it as "worthless", saying "its computation is not even relied upon by the CBI."
Raja also questioned the sanction to prosecute him, saying the same was flawed.
Re: PM and PC too involved in 2G scam - A.Raja says in court
Now Kalmadi suffering from memory loss, (CWG) trial may be affected
New Delhi: Suresh Kalmadi, lodged in Tihar jail for over two months in connection with the multi-crore Commonwealth Games (CWG) scam, is suffering from dementia, a disease related to memory loss, impaired reasoning and personality changes and this may have a bearing on his ongoing trial. The 66-year-old MP from Pune was recently taken to Lok Narayan Jai Prakash (LNJP) Hospital where an MRI scan was conducted on him. The tests show that he was suffering from dementia which gradually affects cognitive functions of the person affected by it, Deputy Inspector General of Tihar R N Sharma said.
He said dementia at a preliminary stage was mentioned in the medical history submitted to Jail authorities by the family members.The MP was ailing much before he was arrested and brought to jail on the allegations of being involved in large-scale corruption in the conduct of the Commonwealth Games, he said. "We are still awaiting a formal copy of the test conducted at the LNJP," he said.
Legal experts feel that the impact of his health condition on the trial would be determined only after it was analysed properly by medical experts.Kalmadi's lawyer Hitesh Jain said that his client had been suffering from this problem for the last four to five years and the same had been communicated to the jail and investigating authorities. Noted lawyer K T S Tulsi said the first thing is that it needs to be established as to how long the undertrial has been suffering from dementia.
"Now if it (dementia) had settled at the time of offence, it may have a bearing on his culpability. As per the law, a demented person suffers from a global memory loss. If there is a memory loss at the time of the commissioning of the offence, it is not possible to have a fraudulent intention," Tulsi contended. Asked whether this could be used as an alibi by the accused to skirt the trial in the CWG scam, Tulsi said "it's a general trend that people take such recourse. What needs to be established is when the disease has affected him. Only after that can one decide whether it will have a bearing on the case or not."
Dementia is considered to be a common problem associated with progression of a person's age in the country as 7.5 per cent of rural and 10.6 per cent of urban elderly are suffering from the memory-related disorder, according to a study published in medical journal The Lancet. Kalmadi, sacked as CWG Organising Committee chairman, is one of the 10 accused on charges of corruption, criminal conspiracy, cheating and forgery in awarding a contract to a Swiss firm at an exorbitant cost. Kalmadi was taken to the hospital after a court allowed him to undergo a medical test on July 16 on the advice given by Tihar Jail's medical superintendent. The DIG said the advice was for an entire health check-up and not specific to diagnose any memory-related illness. Kalmadi's lawyer had also moved an application for him to attend the forthcoming session of Lok Sabha after the Speaker's office informed him that he would need to seek permission from the court. The plea will come up for hearing tomorrow.
Another senior lawyer Manoj Taneja said the law was equal for all. "We should not start commenting only because he is Kalmadi. As an undertrial, he is also entitled for the best medical facility. As far as its effect on the trial is concerned, this will need a certification of medical experts who can say at what stage it was and whether he is medically fit to be tried in this case."
watz this now... a dirty cheap tricks to save his & gov a$$ .. going in jail was all bloody drama..
And he enjoying high profile life in tihar jail.....