2G scam | Non-filing of law ministry’s report; court reserves order

2G scam | Non-filing of law ministry’s report; court reserves order

New Delhi: A Delhi court on Friday reserved its order on a plea by the accused in 2G spectrum allocation scam that CBI be asked to file an opinion of the ministry of law and justice that alleged beneficiary Swan Telecom was not an “associate" firm of Reliance Telecom Ltd (RTL).

Special CBI judge O P Saini reserved its order for 19 September after hearing arguments of CBI and counsel for various accused in the case.

CBI has alleged Swan Telecom was an associate firm of RTL, created to circumvent the then guideline of the department of telecom (DoT) which debarred existing CDMA player from venturing into GSM segment.

Later, RTL passed on the control of Swan Telecom to Shahid Usman Balwa after the DoT allowed it to avail the facility of dual technology, the agency had said.

The ministry of law and justice, in its opinion, said Swan Telecom was not an associate of RTL. The accused want to bring it on record to buttress their arguments.

The court, meanwhile, extended the judicial custody of the 14 accused till 19 September.

CBI prosecutor A K Singh, while winding up the arguments on the opinion of the law ministry, said the agency has no objection if the report is taken on record.

The agency, on its own, will not bring the report as it is “not their document" and they are also not relying on it.

“It is not our relied upon document. We have made it clear that we will not give the report of the ministry of law and justice. We have no objection if the court wants it. The court is empowered to summon this report or document from DoT. We leave it to the court to decide," the prosecutor said.

Earlier, Vijay Aggarwal, counsel for Shahid Usman Balwa, Vinod Goenka and others, alleged the expert committee of Trai, in its report, said it was not possible to predict the value of spectrum but CBI is seeking to prosecute us.

“The expert opinion comes in favour of the accused and that is why they (CBI officials) say they would not file the report. If the report would have come in their favour, they would surely have filed it," Aggarwal said.

Replying to CBI’s plea that there were contradictions in the TRAI report, he said when contradictions appear, then there is no other option except to “discharge the accused."

“On contradiction point alone, the court should discharge my clients," he said.

The counsel said when TRAI’s expert committee is not able to tell the figure of loss, then how the court would frame charges against the accused and prosecute them?

“How much was the loot and how much money was taken by me to my home? CBI should at least tell this," he said.