2G scam: Govt has its way in JPC approving the draft report

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Of the total 30 members in the committee, three members, including one from BJP, were absent. Reuters Of the total 30 members in the committee, three members, including one from BJP, were absent. Reuters
SummaryOf the total 30 members in the committee, three members, including one from BJP, were absent.

to be followed by the Department of Telecommunications in respect of issuance of UAS licences.

"Further, the assurance given by the Minister of Communications and Information Technology (Raja) in all his correspondence with the Prime Minister to maintain full transparency in following established rules and procedures of the Department stood belied."

The report was critical of the decision taken by the then NDA government to grant concessions to telecom operators over non-recovery of "huge amount" of licence fee despite opposition by then Telecom Minister Jagmohan.

The report also concludes that the NDA government had to "forego" revenue to the tune of Rs 42,080.34 crore while offering Migration Package to cellular operators.

"A perusal of the note initiated by the then Minister of Communications (Jagmohan) revealed that he was in complete disagreement with the representations made by the operators, who demanded a moratorium on payment of licence fee for two years and extension of period of licence from 10 to 15 years," the draft report said.

Jagmohan was of the view that "there was no legal, financial, commercial or moral justification for agreeing to the representation made by the operators."

The report, which has come under fire from the BJP, said he strongly favoured the option to recover all the outstanding dues from the operators.

Jagmohan had drawn the attention of the then Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha on the issue of non-recovery of licence fee on December 21, 1998.

In his communication dated December 24, 1998, the Finance Minister, while sharing his concern over non-recovery of huge amount of licence fee, mentioned that such non-recovery would add to the budget deficit of Rs 2,800 crore in the relevant year's Budget, the draft said.

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