Raja drags Manmohan into 2G spectrum, tells court PM was party to all decisions

Written by PTI | New Delhi | Updated: May 6 2014, 05:44am hrs
Former telecom minister A Raja, a key accused facing trial in the 2G spectrum case, on Monday sought to drag Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's name in a Delhi court by saying that all actions were taken with his "concurrence" and not "unilaterally".

"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 and after properly apprising the Prime Minister and taking his concurrence. My actions do not amount to abuse of official position or any other offence," Raja told Special CBI Judge O P Saini.

Deposing before the court, Raja said that monitoring of 2G scam probe by the SC led the CBI to investigate the case in a "predetermined manner" and there was no loss to the exchequer as claimed by the probe agency. He also told the court that the "flawed" CAG report made the whole issue "sensational" and there was complete ignorance of policy formation and government functioning by the officers investigating the case.

"I was not given an opportunity of hearing by the Supreme Court. The flawed CAG report made the issue sensational without even taking into account the views of the DoT," he said.

"There was a complete ignorance of policy formation and government functioning by the investigating officers. The monitoring of the investigation by the Supreme Court led to the CBI investigating the case in a predetermined manner and fabricating oral evidence, since there was no documentary evidence to support the prosecution. Adverse media publicity also contributed to the case against me," Raja said.

He told this to the court while recording his statement as per the provisions of the CrPC. The court concluded recording of Raja's statement during which 1,718 questions were posed to him. On being asked as to why some of the prosecution witnesses had deposed against him during recording of their testimonies earlier, Raja said that they had "done so under fear of being made accused in this case."

He claimed there was a cartel among old GSM operators and their interests would have been seriously affected by entry of new operators which would have led to reduction of tariffs. "I have acted throughout in public interest in accordance with the law, regulatory framework and government policy, and not for any personal gains.

Raja also alleged that "old GSM operators were taking advantage of non-disclosure of availability of spectrum and sharing spectrum among themselves and preventing new competition, which was opposed by me."