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I won't resign, says Raja

Last updated on: November 12, 2010 12:27 IST

I won't resign, says Raja

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Undeterred by the mounting opposition attack on his role in 2G spectrum allocation, Telecom Minister A Raja on Friday ruled out resignation over the issue, saying he will prove that everything has been done according to the law.

"The question does not arise at all.

"We will prove that everything has been done according to the law," the embattled minister told reporters, a day after the opposition stalled proceedings in Parliament for the second consecutive day demanding his resignation.

Raja's comments assume significance in the wake of indications that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will take a decision on his continuance in the Union of Council of Ministers after his return from Seoul on Friday night.

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Image: Telecom Minister A Raja.

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"Where does that question arise from? It doesn't arise at all," he said when pressed whether he would step down in the wake of the mounting attack from the opposition, including Bharatiya Janata Party and All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam.

The DMK Minister maintained that he will not comment on the spectrum allocation issue as it is 'sub-judice' and said the affidavit submitted by the Telecom Department before the Supreme Court on Thursday 'says it all'.

"The entire matter is sub-judice. It may not be fair on my part to comment on this. . . Whatever I have done is according to the law," he said.

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I won't resign, says Raja

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Opposition mounted its attack after the CAG said it has submitted to the government the report on the 2G spectrum allotment that may have caused a loss of over Rs 176,000 crore to the exchequer.

Sources in the know say that the CAG has accused the Telecom Ministry for undervaluing 2G spectrum, sold to new players in 2008, and held that the allotment price was not realistic, which has caused a revenue loss of Rs 1,76,700 crore (Rs 1,767 billion) to the government.

The telecom minister also took a dig at AIADMK J Jayalalithaa on Friday for asking the Prime Minister to sack him from the Cabinet with a promise of 'unconditional support' to the Congress if DMK withdrew support.

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I won't resign, says Raja

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"She has no moral right to make such statements. She is the only chief minister in the country who refused to recognise her own signature in the court of law to save her skin," Raja said.

"She has no authority. She herself is fighting corruption charges. She is the only leader who has protracted proceedings in corruption cases filed against her to 10 to 12 years," he said.

Jayalalithaa on Thursday asked Singh to sack Raja, whom she accused of perpetrating a 'massive scam', and said her party was ready to replace the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, which has 18 MPs, in the Congress-led coalition government at the Centre.

Raja said that CAG had made similar harsh observations after the 1999 policy under which the government moved to revenue share regime from fixed licence fee structure. "After that CAG report there has been no change in the policy and the same policy is being followed ever since 1999, including by all my predecessors," Raja said.

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Image: Spectrum, a money spinner.
Photographs: Reuters
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Raja said that CAG had made similar harsh observations even after the 1999 policy under which the government moved to revenue share regime from fixed licence fee structure.

After that CAG report there has been no change in the policy and the same policy is being followed ever since 1999, including by his predecessors.

With regards to AIADMK supremo A Jayalalitha offer to the Centre in which she offered her support and demanded sacking of Raja, the Minister has said that she (Jayalalitha) has no moral right to make any such offer, as she is herself mired into corruption charges.

"She (Jayalalitha) is trying to save her own skin," Raja said, adding he was yet to receive a copy of the CAG report before making any observation.


Photographs: Reuters
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