SC junks Swamy plea to review clean chit to PC

The Supreme Court has dismissed a plea to review its verdict, which had held that there was no material to show, even prima facie, that Finance Minister P Chidambaram had abused his position or colluded with the then telecom minister A Raja in the 2G spectrum allotment scam.

A Bench of Justices G S Singhvi and K S Radhakrishnan turned down a request by Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy to re-evaluate the merits of his case and order an investigation into the role of Chidambaram's role in the spectrum allotment. Swamy also wanted him added as an accused in the case saying he had helped Raja's alleged corrupt motives.

The Bench, in its order of December 4, held that their judgment dated August 24 did not suffer from any material defect, requiring a reassessment of their verdict.

"We have perused the averments contained in the review petition and have gone through the record of Special Leave Petition (filed by Swamy) and Interlocutory Application (filed by NGO 'Centre for Public Interest Litigation') and are satisfied that order dated 24.08.2012 does not suffer from any error apparent which may be warranted its reconsideration. The review petition is accordingly dismissed," held the court.

Swamy is now left with the only remedy of filing a curative petition, which is the inherent jurisdiction of Supreme Court and such petitions are to be entertained in rarity only when very strong reasons, as per the court, exist. A curative petition has to be certified by a senior advocate and is then circulated to the three senior most judges and the judges who delivered the impugned judgment if available. It is only when a majority of the judges conclude that the matter needs a hearing that it is listed before the same Bench.

Swamy had moved the apex court, demanding an investigation against Chidambaram, against the order of a Special CBI court , which had refused to make the Union minister an accused in the spectrum case.

Upholding the trial court's views, the apex court, after going through the material put on record by the two petitioners, noted that "no material is available, even prima facie, to conclude that Chidambaram had abused his official position, or used any corrupt or illegal means for obtaining any pecuniary advantage for himself or any other persons, including Raja".

The August-verdict also said that a criminal conspiracy between Chidambaram and Raja could not be inferred on the basis of a mere fact that "there were official discussions between the officers of the Ministry of Finance and the Department of Telecom and also between the two ministers".

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