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A Raja ignored requests from PM, MoF on 2G: Investigating officer

PTI  New Delhi, November 13, 2013
First Published: 23:23 IST(13/11/2013) | Last Updated: 23:24 IST(13/11/2013)

The chief investigating officer in the 2G scam on Wednesday claimed in a Delhi court that former telecom minister A Raja had ignored the requests of the Prime Minister and the Ministry of Finance to stay the allocation of licences for the radiowaves on pricing issue.

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CBI's Superintendent of Police Vivek Priyadarshi told the court that according to records of Department of Telecom (DoT) and Ministry of Finance, no meeting took place among PM, Raja, the then Finance Minister, the then External Affairs Minister and others on telecom issues prior to January 10, 2008.

"The DoT and Ministry of Finance's records relevant to the issues were seized during investigation. These records did not point out any meetings between the aforesaid ministers prior to January 10, 2008, when DoT under the directions of A Raja, issued LOIs to new UASL applicants," Priyadarshi said.

"The records of the Ministry of Finance showed that the Ministry had requested the DoT to stay further allocation of licences and spectrum, which were linked to the old prices of 2001. Similar requests from Prime Minister was also there to the MOC&IT (Raja)," he told special CBI judge O P Saini.

During his cross-examination by senior advocate Sushil Kumar, who appeared for Raja, Priyadarshi said according to records of the Ministry of Finance, till January 10, 2008, the pricing issue remained "unresolved".

"Further meetings after January 10, 2008 between MOC&IT, Finance Minister and the PMO indicated in the subsequent records of Ministry of Finance only talk about resolution of outstanding issues," he said.

He, however, said DoT had explained letters of intent (LoIs) were already been issued to applicants and department was now contractually obliged to fulfil the conditions mentioned in it and Unified Access Service Licences (UASLs) signed subsequently.

Priyadarshi told the court that he had not investigated as to how many meetings of the Union Cabinet, attended together by the PM, External Affairs Minister, Finance Minister, Law Minister and MOC&IT, took place between November 2007 and July 2008.

He also said that he did not investigate as to how many meetings took place between the prime minister and Raja during the period.

Priyadarshi told the court that according to records of Ministry of Finance, few meetings took place between Raja, then Finance Minister, then External Affairs Minister, then Law Minister and the Prime Minister after January 10, 2008.

The official denied the suggestions of Raja's counsel that he "suppressed" record of any meetings between these ministers from November 2007 to July 2008 to falsely implicate the then telecom minister.

"Whatever came to my notice during investigation in this regard has been taken by me on the record," he said.

Raja, along with others, including DMK MP Kanimozhi, is facing trial for his alleged involvement in the case.

The court had on October 22, 2011 framed charges against 17 accused under various provisions of the IPC and the Prevention of Corruption Act dealing with offences of criminal conspiracy, cheating, forgery, faking documents, abusing official position, criminal misconduct by public servant and taking bribe.

The offences entail punishment ranging from six months in jail to life imprisonment.


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