Court asks CBI to file more documents in telecom scam case

CBI

The CBI was on Monday directed by a Delhi court to place before it the documents relating to the resolution passed by three companies, including Airtel and Vodafone, for seeking additional spectrum during the NDA regime.

The court told the CBI that these telecom firms must have approached the government first for seeking additional spectrum and they must have also passed a resolution in this regard.

"These companies must have approached the government (for additional spectrum). Where is the resolution? Show me those documents," Special CBI Judge O P Saini said.

The court, which was scheduled to consider on taking cognizance of the chargesheet filed against Airtel, Vodafone and others for alleged irregularities in allocation of additional spectrum to them during the NDA regime, posted the matter for further arguments on February 19.

During the brief hearing, the court told the agency that spectrum is a "costly resource" and the companies must have passed a resolution before seeking additional spectrum from the Department of Telecom (DoT).

"These companies must have resolved that we want additional spectrum. You (CBI) are saying Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) was pursuing their (the three companies) case with the DoT. You (CBI) show me the documents," it said.

The CBI had on December 21 last year filed a chargesheet in which former Telecom Secretary Shyamal Ghosh and three telecom firms -- Bharti Cellular Ltd, Hutchison Max Pvt Ltd (now known as Vodafone India Ltd) and Sterling Cellular Ltd (now known as Vodafone Mobile Service Ltd) -- have been named as an accused.

In the 57-page chargesheet, the CBI has booked all the accused for the offences of criminal conspiracy (120-B) of the IPC and under provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

During the hearing, the judge also told the agency that the case is about the pricing dispute over additional spectrum and they should file the documents relating to passing of any such resolution by these companies.

... contd.

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