Apprised PM about 2G allocation, Raja tells court
Former telecom minister A. Raja told a court here Monday that the 2G spectrum allocation decisions were taken on the proposals of DoT and discussions with other cabinet ministers and after properly apprising the prime minister and taking his concurrence.
"I did not take any unilateral decision, but acted on the proposals of DoT and discussions with other cabinet ministers and the then solicitor general (G.E. Vahanvati) and after properly apprising the prime minister and taking his concurrence," Raja told Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) special court Judge O.P. Saini.
Raja, facing trial in the 2G allocation case, was handed over 1,700 questions running into 824 pages March 27 by the court.
The questions are part of the recording of the statement of Raja.
While recording his statement, Raja said he acted throughout in the public interest in accordance with the law, regulatory framework and government policy, and "not for any personal gains".
He said there has been no loss to the exchequer and on the contrary the tariff has come down and tele density has increased manifold, leading to public savings as well as an increase in the revenue share of the government.
"My actions do not amount to abuse of official position or any other offence," Raja said in his statement.
Raja, who started recording his statement early morning Monday, has replied to over 1,700 questions asked by the court which has concluded recording his statement and adjourned the matter for Tuesday to hear other accused in the case.
According to the government auditor, Raja was biased while distributing 2G mobile airwaves and operating licences to telecom firms, causing a loss of up to Rs.1.76 lakh crore in revenue to the treasury.
All the accused, including Raja, are out on bail.
In a separate case related to 2G, the court has adjourned the recording of statements of Essar Group and Loop Telecom promoters till May 19.
A third set of charges filed by the CBI in the 2G case alleged that promoters of the Essar Group were the real investors and beneficiaries of the spectrum and licences issued to Loop Telecom, which was used as a front company by Essar to acquire 2G licences and spectrum in 2008.
This has been denied by the accused.
The court gave a questionnaire containing 645 questions to Essar Group and Loop Telecom promoters, who are among the accused, April 9.
(Posted on 05-05-2014)