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Special court defers hearing in 2G spectrum scam case

Special court defers hearing in 2G spectrum scam case

A special court today deferred hearing in the 2G spectrum scam cases in which former telecom minister A Raja and DMK MP Kanimozhi are among the accused.

Special Judge O P Saini, who is exclusively dealing with cases arising out of the 2G spectrum scam, also issued production warrants against Unitech Ltd MD Sanjay Chandra and Bollywood producer Karim Morani, who were absent as they are in judicial custody in other cases.

While Chandra is in Tihar Jail in connection with several cheating cases against his real estate firm Unitech Ltd, Morani is in a Hyderabad jail in a rape case.

The other accused were present in the court.

The court — which has been hearing the three cases, two filed by the CBI and one by the Enforcement Directorate — has fixed November 7 as the next date of hearing when it is likely to decide the date of pronouncing the judgement.

In the first case filed by the CBI, those facing trial include Raja and Kanimozhi as well as former telecom secretary Siddharth Behura, Raja’s erstwhile private secretary R K Chandolia, Swan Telecom promoters Shahid Usman Balwa and Vinod Goenka, Unitech Ltd MD Chandra and three top executives of the Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group (RADAG) — Gautam Doshi, Surendra Pipara and Hari Nair.

The directors of Kusegaon Fruits and Vegetables Pvt Ltd Asif Balwa and Rajiv Agarwal, Kalaignar TV Director Sharad Kumar and Karim Morani are also accused in the case.

Besides these 14, three telecom firms — Swan Telecom Pvt Ltd (STPL), Reliance Telecom Ltd and Unitech Wireless (Tamil Nadu) Ltd — are facing trial in the case.

In October 2011, the court framed charges against them 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.

In its charge sheet filed in April 2011 against Raja and others, the CBI had alleged that there was a loss of Rs 30,984 crore to the exchequer in the allocation of 122 licences for 2G spectrum which were scrapped by the Supreme Court on February 2, 2012.

The court has recorded the statements of 154 CBI witnesses — including Anil Ambani, his wife Tina Ambani and former corporate lobbyist Niira Radia — running into over 4,400 pages.

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

In the second CBI case, those facing trial are Essar Group promoters Ravi Ruia and Anshuman Ruia, Loop Telecom promoters Kiran Khaitan, her husband I P Khaitan and Essar Group Director (Strategy and Planning) Vikash Saraf.

Three firms, Loop Telecom Ltd, Loop Mobile India Ltd and Essar Tele Holding Ltd (ETHL), have also been named in the charge sheet.

The ED had filed a charge sheet in April 2014 against 19 people, including Raja, Kanimozhi, Shahid Balwa, Vinod Goenka, Asif Balwa, Rajiv Aggarwal, Karim Morani and Sharad Kumar, in connection with a money laundering case relating to the scam.

In its charge sheet, the ED also named DMK supremo M Karunanidhi’s wife Dayalu Ammal as an accused in the case, in which it alleged that Rs 200 crore was paid by STPL promoters to DMK-run Kalaignar TV.

The final report named 10 individuals and nine companies as accused in the case. The ED has charge-sheeted them for the offence of money laundering under provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

( Source – PTI )

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