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SC: Trai 'no loss' report will not influence anyone

SC: Trai 'no loss' report will not influence anyone

Author: TNN
Publication: The Times of India
Date: September 30, 2011
URL: http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2011-09-30/india/30229921_1_auction-2g-spectrum-spectrum-scam-telecom-minister

The Supreme Court on Thursday gave a thumbs down to the "zero loss" estimate of the 2G spectrum scam by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai).

CBI counsel, senior advocate K K Venugopal, told a bench of Justice G S Singhvi and A K Ganguly that the agency had objected to the unsolicited cover note from the telecom regulator giving a "zero loss" estimate of the irregular allotment of spectrum, which was pegged by the CBI at Rs 30,000 crore. The bench said, "Nobody will be influenced by these documents."

Venugopal said the CBI had written to Trai, saying the regulator's estimate was unacceptable because it had not considered several important things relating to the allocation of spectrum. "But the agency has not yet received a response from Trai," he said.

In another case relating to spectrum, the CBI told the apex court that jailed former telecom minister A Raja dodged past then finance minister P Chidambaram's insistence to auction 2G spectrum.

Opposing Subramanian Swamy's application seeking a CBI probe into Chidambaram's alleged role in the pricing of spectrum, Venugopal said Raja moved surreptitiously to pre-empt opposition from the then finance minister to his decision to give away spectrum at 2001 prices. The finance ministry had decided to press for auction of spectrum in the telecom commission meeting scheduled for January 9, 2008, he said.

"Then finance minister and finance secretary Subbarao had gone into the whole matter and prepared a position note on January 7, 2008 to press for auction route for the January 9 meeting. But Raja rescheduled the meeting for January 15, jumped the gun and issued letters of intent to his favourite telecom companies on January 10," Venugopal said.

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