2G scam: "I do not recall," says Anil Ambani

Aug 22 2013, 20:52 IST
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Anil Ambani's company Reliance Telecom Ltd and three of his group executives are accused in the case. Reuters Anil Ambani's company Reliance Telecom Ltd and three of his group executives are accused in the case. Reuters
SummaryAnil Ambani's company Reliance Telecom Ltd and three of his group executives are accused in the case.

Appearing before a Special Court hearing the 2G spectrum scam case, industrialist Anil Ambani on Thursday deposed as a prosecution witness but CBI began cross-examining its own witness after he "resiled" from a statement made during the probe.

Related: Anil Ambani group cos' gain, Reliance Infrastructure shares climb over 8%

The CBI, which had presented Anil Ambani, Chairman of Reliance ADAG, as a witness to buttress its case switched strategy and cross-examined him when he said he had not handed over any note to the CBI in February, 2011 during the probe.

Quote: Reliance Communications Ltd

At this stage, Special Public Prosecutor U U Lalit submitted that Ambani was "resiling" from his previous statement and pleaded that he may be allowed to cross-examine him.

"Heard and allowed," said Special CBI Judge O P Saini, allowing CBI's plea. Ambani's company Reliance Telecom Ltd and three of his group executives are accused in the case.

Lalit's plea came when the 54-year-old corporate baron recalled that he had visited CBI in February, 2011 but did not hand over any note to the CBI officer.

When the court asked him if he was under any "threat, pressure or coercion today from any quarter", he said "I am not under any threat, pressure or coercion."

"Yes sir, I am making my statement voluntarily and as per my own free will," Ambani told the judge when he was asked, whether he was now making his statement voluntarily and as per his own free will.

He replied in the affirmative to a query from the judge that he knew the consequences of giving a false statement and that he could be prosecuted and punished under the law.

Ambani's four-hour long deposition with a lunch break saw him denying that Swan Telecom was a front company of his group RADAG for securing the precious radiowaves.Tomorrow, his wife Tina will also appear as prosecution witness.

Ambani, who was summoned to the CBI headquarters here in 2011 in connection with the probe, said he did not know whether any statement of his was recorded by the agency.

"I do not recall" was his stock reply to most of the questions put up by the prosecution. He said it was not in his knowledge that Swan Telecom Pvt Ltd (STPL) had applied for unified access service licences (UASL) in 2007.

"Sir, you are forgetting too much. Try to recollect something," the judge

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