rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » Business » Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam

Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam

Last updated on: July 6, 2011 18:02 IST

Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam

     Next

Next

Union Textile Minister Dayanidhi Maran has come under the scanner in the 2G scam probe, with the Central Bureau of Investigation telling the Supreme Court on Wednesday that he had misused his office and forced C Sivasankran, the promoter of Chennai-based Aircel, to sell his firm to Malaysia-based Maxis Communications in 2006.

Maran has rubbished the allegations, but is under fire for allegedly striking a deal with Sri Lankan-born Anand Krishnan, the promoter of Maxis, and for also roping in the Reddy family of Apollo Hospitals as a co-investor in the deal.

The allegation is that in return, Maxis invested about Rs 600 crore (Rs 6 billion) in Kalanidhi Maran's Sun TV. Maran had said this allegation, too, is baseless.

The agency, which placed its 71-page fresh status report about the 2G scam, said that during 2004-07 when Maran was telecom Minister, the promoter C Sivasankaran, was forced to sell the stake in Aircel to a Malaysian firm Maxis Group.

Senior advocate K K Venugopal, who read the status report before a bench of justice G S Singhvi and A K Ganguly, did not take  Maran's name but stated that the Chennai business man was not granted UAS licence for two years.

Click NEXT to read on . . .


Image: Textiles Minister Dayanidhi Maran.
Photographs: Reuters
     Next

Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam!

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

It said that the Malaysian firm was favoured by Maran and was granted licence within six months after taking over the Aircel in December 2006. Maran was the Telecom Minister between February 2004 and May, 2007.

"The gentleman (promoter of Aircel) had been knocking at various doors but was left with no choice but to sell his shares to a Malaysian form," said  Venugopal, representing CBI, while reading out from the status report that was filed in a sealed cover.

Earlier, an NGO, Centre for Public Interest Litigation, had placed documents before the ape/x court showing the alleged role of Maran in favouring Maxis group of Malaysia which had bought Chennai-based telecom company, Aircel, owned by Siva Group, when he was Telecom Minister from 2004 to 2007.

The CBI also assured the Supreme Court that it would complete probe into the money trail in the 2G spectrum scandal by August 31.

Click NEXT to read on . . .


Image: (Inset) C Sivasankaran.
Photographs: Reuters
Prev     Next

Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam!

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

The investigative agency also said before the court that it would complete the probe into all the irregularities in spectrum allocation during 2001 to 2008 within 3 months.

So after former telecom minister A Raja's arrest, another high profile minister's involvement is being debated in the 2G scam. The Public Accounts Committee chairman Murli Manohar Joshi too said Textiles Minister Dayanidhi Maran played a crucial role in starting the 2G spectrum scam.

According to Joshi, Maran was instrumental in changing the spectrum pricing while he was the telecom minister.

All the powers vested with the group of ministers on spectrum pricing were transferred to the telecom department. This is how India's biggest scam was born.

Click NEXT to read on . . .


Photographs: Reuters
Prev     Next

Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam!

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

Essar used Loop as a front, alleges CBI

With the probe gathering momentum, the CBI also said that telecom major Essar could be 'formally charged' in the 2G scam.

Already, top executives of top telecom firms like Anil Ambani's Reliance Telecom and Unitech Wireless are in Tihar jail for having been a part of the scam by conspiring with former telecom minister A Raja to obtain telecom licences at throwaway prices.

Maran was the telecom minister before A Raja took over.

Click NEXT to read on . . .


Image: Essar group CEO Prashant Ruia.
Photographs: Reuters
Prev     Next

Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam!

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

According to reports, the Ruia-owned Essar allegedly used Loop Telecom as a front to buy licences and spectrum, more than what the company was allowed to legally. Telecom firms cannot own more than 10 per cent stake in another telecom company in the same circle, according to law.

Investigators said that the probe into the alleged Loop-Essar deal would be over by August 31 and a formal chargesheet could then be filed against the company.

Click NEXT to read on . . .


Photographs: Reuters
Prev     Next

Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam!

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

The CBI said that 'Essar was the group behind Loop and it had financed Loop's application for spectrum allocation. Essar had also given a guarantee for its bank loan and, interestingly, Ruias had reduced their stake in Loop to 2.15 per cent only two days before the licences were granted'.

Meanwhile, Reliance Communications too has been accused of using Swan Telecom as a front to procure telecom licence.

Click NEXT to read on . . .


Image: Reliance ADAG chairman Anil Ambani.
Photographs: Reuters
Prev     Next

Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam!

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

In its defence, however, RComm has said that it had divested its stake in Swan before the grant of 2G spectrum and telecom licence.

Meanwhile, the Joint Parliamentary Committee probing the 2G spectrum allocation scam will start questioning from Thursday former telecom secretaries, including Siddharth Behuria who is currently lodged in Tihar jail, and ex-chiefs of TRAI.

Behura will be produced before the committee on July 12 after the special CBI court dealing with the 2G spectrum allocation scam case agreed for the same.

Click NEXT to read on . . .



Prev     Next

Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam!

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

He is in jail since February facing charges of cheating, forgery and criminal conspiracy in the 2G scam.

Besides former telecom secretaries, former chiefs of TRAI will also appear before the committee to record their evidences.

Former secretaries A V Gokak, who was telecom secretary between November 1996 and August 1998, Vinod Vaish, Shyamal Ghosh, Anil Kumar, J S Sarma and Nripendra Mishra will be examined on its sittings on July 7 and 8.

Click NEXT to read on . . .


Photographs: Reuters
Prev     Next

Now Maran, Essar too under CBI scanner in 2G scam!

Prev     More
Prev

More

Dinesh Shankar Mathur and former Chief Vigilance Commissioner P J Thomas who was also a telecom secretary during Raja's period, will appear before the committee on its sitting on July 12 and 13, the source said.

The secretaries will be quizzed to know the policies adopted during their tenure and other details including the sources of policy recommendations.

Former TRAI chairmen whose statements will be recorded include Nripendra Mishra, S S Sodhi, M S Verma and Pradip Baijal.


Photographs: Reuters
Prev     More
AGENCIES