From the world of mobile phones…. to the real life scandals.
Rajeev Srinivasan has a list of the write ups detailing this “scandal” of monumental proportions. It is rumored to be worth…hold your breath….22 billion dollars!
Imagine the kind of money, if invested in broadband or community Wifis would truly make us a “superpower” indeed!
I quote the relevant text (emphasis mine).
Documents available with The Pioneer show that Central Bureau of Investigation DIG Vineet Agarwal had on November 16, 2009, sought call detail records of Nira Radia from Director General of Income Tax (Investigation) Milap Jain. “It has been reliably learnt that certain middlemen, including one Ms Nira Radia of M/s Noesis Consultancy, were actively involved in the above-mentioned (spectrum scam) criminal conspiracy,” Agarwal’s letter to Jain, seeking the detailed call records, stated.
On November 20, 2009, as per Jain’s instructions, Joint Director of Income Tax Ashish Abrol provided the details of conversation between Radia and key players in the spectrum scam, including A Raja.
“There are some direct conversations between Ms Radia and the Telecom Minister. In some other conservations, Ms Radia boasts of having helped some of the telecom operators in their efforts to obtain licences/spectrums. Ms Radia has also been in regular touch with Shri Chandolia,” confirmed Abrol to the CBI. RK Chandolia was Raja’s private secretary during the time of spectrum allocation and has since been elevated as an economic adviser in the Department of Telecommunication.
Nira Radia is the person who is under scanner for lobbying in the Ministry of Telecom.
Radia is an NRI, who landed in India in early 2000 for some liaison work for aviation companies. Of the nine companies that benefited from the dubious spectrum allocation by Raja, the CBI found that four companies were “serviced” by Radia.
Highly-placed sources said the CBI was denied permission by top authorities to interrogate Radia even though the telephone intercepts clearly exposed her role in the scam, which cost an estimated Rs 1,00,000 crore to the exchequer. “There are some direct conversations between Ms Radia and the Telecom Minister. In some other conservations, Ms Radia boasts of having helped some of the telecom operators in their efforts to obtain licences/spectrums.
CBI is now probing the scam. But then, CBI has been used as an instrument to intimidate rather than be of any “benefit”.
The idea is to screw up the alliance partners and make them more amenable to persuasion in the electoral political compulsions. Everyone was AWARE of the “scam”, the likes of Swam Telecom (promoted by Anil Ambani) who made a windfall fortune and and Unitech which erstwhile had interests ONLY in real estate.
….real estate companies Swan and Unitech bagged the spectrum license at a throw away price and they off-loaded their shares at a whopping price to multi-national telecom giants. The Swan Telecom bagged the license for Rs.1537 crore for operating in 13 circles. Within months (September) it sold its 45 per cent of shares to Etisalat, the telecom giant in UAE for 900 million US dollars (Approximately Rs.4500 crore).
Similarly, the Unitech, another real estate company too entered into a bumper deal, without investing anything in telecom infrastructure. The company got license to operate in 22 circles for Rs.1651 crore. Within weeks, it sold 60 per cent shares for Rs.6120 crores to the Norwegian company Telenor, who is currently a major telecom player in Pakistan and Bangladesh.
This is just another media circus. Raja is just another player in the game. We are all suckers AS USUAL.