Thursday, May 2, 2013

2G Scam: Raja’s denial may further stoke JPC fire

New Delhi: Former telecom minister and key 2G accused A Raja has denied the allegation that he “misled” PM Manmohan Singh saying he took no unilateral decision and kept Singh informed at every step.

“I took no unilateral decisions. Every major decision was taken after consultations with DoT officials, and then with Prime Minister, finance minister and external affairs
minister,” Raja said in a fresh missive to the JPC chairperson P C Chacko. Raja said he “personally discussed” with the Prime Minister all issues, including entry fee, nonauction of spectrum, first-come-first-serve policy and processing of applications till September 25, 2007.

The government has refuted his allegations against the PM, saying it was for the ex-minister to explain if some telecom firms were tipped off about the decision to issue licences on compliance of letters of intent (LoI).

However,with the Opposition up in arms over the JPC draft giving a clean chit to the PM while accusing the Vajpayee government of giving away revenue of Rs 40,080 crore, Raja’s letter will add to the political heat.

Raja said he met the PM on several occasions between November, 2007 and January, 2008 and told him about the telecom ministry’s decision to issue licences on basis of compliance of LoI. The decision to award licences by the LoI method has been criticized as it has been alleged that the procedure was manipulated to favour select telecom firms. Raja claims licences were issued only after PM approved the LoI route for applications being processed.

Privilege notice against Chacko
New Delhi: Outraged at the manner in which the JPC draft report on the 2G spectrum scam was leaked to the media even before it reached most of the 30 panel members, BJP, Left and DMK members submitted privilege notices against chairman P C Chacko in both Houses of Parliament on Monday. TNN

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