The NGO Centre for Public Interest Litigation Monday moved the Supreme Court seeking direction to the government and its agencies, including Serious Fraud Investigation Office, to produce all material and reports pertaining to their investigations into the intercepted conversation of former corporate lobbyist Niira Radia or those emerging from it.
The application moved by the NGO today said: “Direct the Government of India, SFIO, DGIT, Registrar of Companies and other agencies to produce all material and reports, arising out of or involving the investigation into the intercepted conversations of Radia’s, including the ones mentioned in this application.”
It has further sought directions to the government, SFIO, RoC, DGIT and the CBI to take all of these investigations to their logical conclusion, under the supervision of the apex court.
CPIL has also urged the court to direct that all the intercepted conversations of Radia and related documents that show criminality are made accessible to public. However, the application said those documents that would impede the process of investigation could be held back from public gaze.
On May 20, 2010, a copy of recordings consisting of 5,800 intercepted conversations of Radia for the period from Aug 20, 2008 to July 9, 2009 were handed over to the CBI for investigation. Around 100 intercepted conversations came into public domain after the same were leaked, it said.
The application said: “It is important to point out that the SFIO investigation also confirms what was for long been suspected, i.e. that M/s Unitech was fronting for M/s Tatas and had obtained 2G spectrum allocated by the DoT in 2008 by cheating and fraud. Just like M/s Loop was the front for M/s Essar, M/s Unitech was actually acting as a front for M/s Tatas.”
The SFIO report, the application quotes, saying: “This money was not paid directly to Unitech Ltd. The companies of Tata Group were put into service to route funds to the group companies of Unitech and these companies finally passed on the funds aggregating Rs.1,700 crore to Unitech Wireless (Tamil Nadu) Pvt Ltd during March 2007 to March 2008. The money advanced by Tata Realty was in turn received from Tata Sons.”
The CPIL’s application says SFIO alleges a subsequent cover-up by Unitech which had “after receiving the funds, the names of the companies were changed to conceal their identity. After procurement of the licences through the above eight companies, they were subsequently amalgamated with Unitech Wireless (Tamil Nadu) Pvt Ltd … an accused in the 2G scam”. The SFIO report further states: “The money received from Tata Realty, through its group companies, was utilised by Unitech to pay the licence fees to the government for acquisition of licences.”
Claiming to posses the SFIO’s report into the sale of channel ‘News X’ and other issues, the CPIL, in its application, said “the report deals with a “series of acts that show corporate fraud, offences of cheating, criminal conspiracy and serious violations of whole set of company laws”.
“The report shows as to how through a maze of sham transactions, the channel ‘News X’ was controlled by Reliance (Mukesh Ambani Group) through the agency of Radia,” the application said.
The SFIO report recommended “registration of cases under various sections of the IPC, including Section 420 (cheating) and Section 120B (criminal conspiracy) against Mukesh Ambani. The report also recommends action against Radia and her group companies”.
The application said an attempt is being made to “scuttle investigations arising out of or involving the intercepted conversations of Radia’s telephones in order to save top corporate groups” and only strong directions from the apex court coupled with the disclosure of the transcribed conversations can lead to the guilty being brought to book, the CPIL said in its application.