The CBI has told a Delhi court hearing the 2G case that it has evidence to establish that Reliance Telecom of Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group (ADAG) had equity in Shahid Balwa-promoted Swan Telecom when the latter applied for 2G licence. The agency has also told the court that Balwa forged the minutes of a board meeting of a company, Giraffe Consultancies Services had funded Tiger Traders (P) Limited that in turn ADAG used to buy majority shares of Swan.
ADAG has consistently denied that it had any shares in Swan when it was given the 2G licence. Swan is one of the companies suspected to have been favoured by sacked telecom minister A Raja in allocation of 2G-spectrum."It has also come in evidence that board minutes of M/S Giraffe Consultancies Services Limited (owned by Shahid Balwa) were forged to show that its shares stood transferred on February 25, 2007 to the persons belonging to DB group/relative of Shahid Balwa," the agency has said. "One of the purchaser of the shares, who has been examined as a witness had stated that he was made to sign blank transfer papers regarding the shares and he did not make any payment for the purchase of those shares."
Taking note of the CBI’s submissions, special judge OP Saini on Friday denied bail both to Shahid Balwa and RK Chandolia, former personal secretary to Raja. “The allegations on the face of it are quite serious and show the deep-rooted conspiracy, planning and articulation in the commission of the offence,” the court said.
The CBI has said that while opening the bank account of Swan Telecom, an official of one of the group company of ADAG has stated in the bank that Swan Telecom was their associate company. “It is clear on the record that this company was incorporated by Reliance group of companies and, as such, it was ineligible for grant of licences,” said CBI in its report.
In response, an ADAG spokesperson said: “Reliance Telecom’s equity shareholding in Swan Telecom was sold, and the entire investment in its preference shares was redeemed, much prior to the grant of the 2G licences to Swan Telecom Ltd in January 2008. The charges of manipulation of records/minutes etc, or that Swan was not eligible for licence doesn’t pertain to us.”