After Swan, focus now on Unitech in 2G scam
After the arrest of Swan Telecom promoter Shahid Balwa, the focus of the CBI was now on another real-estate house -- Unitech -- who earned a quick profit of nearly 267% by off-loading 60% of shares after getting spectrum in 2007-08.india Updated: Feb 10, 2011 17:28 IST
After the arrest of Swan Telecom promoter Shahid Balwa, the focus of the CBI was now on another real-estate house -- Unitech -- who earned a quick profit of nearly 267% by off-loading 60% of shares after getting spectrum in 2007-08.
Sources in the agency said that officials of the Unitech would be questioned soon again after the CBI was through with the interrogation of Shahid Balwa, promoted of Swan Telecom and Managing Director of DB group, a real estate house.
The charges against Unitech, according to the CBI's FIR, was that it offlaoded 60% of its shares to Telenor, a Norway-based telecom company and earned a profit of 267% even before the roll out.
"M/s Unitech was alloted UAS licences for 22 cricles for Rs 1658 crore. It offloaded its 60% of shares in the licences to Telenor of Norway for Rs 6100 crore even before the roll-out," the FIR said.
Some of the officials of the Unitech have already been questioned by the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate and since now some more evidence had surfaced, there would be a fresh round of questioning, the CBI sources said.
Efforts to seek comments from Unitech did not fructify.
According to the FIR, "the estimated loss to the governemnt by grant of licences to these two companies (Swan and Unitech) alone comes to Rs 7,105 crore. On pro-rata basis, the estimated loss for all the 122 circles is more than Rs 22,000 crore."
Swan was alloted UAS licences for 13 circles for Rs 1537 crore and it sold 45% of shares before roll-out to UAE-based Etislat for Rs 4200 crore, the FIR said.
In a five-page FIR, CBI charged that the officials of the Department of Telecom and some private companies entered into a criminal conspiracy and caused wrongful gains to themselves. It said the licenses were issued at a very nominal rate based on prices fixed in the year 2001.
"As per the information received, all this was done in criminal conspiracy between DoT offcials and private companies in order to award licences to the company for a heavy consideration by putting a cap on the number of applicants against recommendation of TRAI and by awarding licences to private companies on first-come-first-serve basis on the rates of 2001 without competitive bidding," the FIR said.