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2G is no scam: Court

New Delhi: A Special CBI court on Thursday acquitted former telecom minister A Raja, DMK MP Kanimozhi and all 15 others accused in the 2G scam case that had rocked the Manmohan Singh-led UPA-II government, ruling that the prosecution had "miserably failed" to prove any of the corruption and money laundering charges. Raja remained in jail for over 15 months while Kanimozhi was in prison for six months before they were granted bail. The other accused persons too were in jail for varying terms.
"I have absolutely no hesitation in holding that the prosecution has miserably failed to prove any of the charges against any of the accused," Special CBI Judge O P Saini said in his verdicts in three separate cases related to the 2G scam in a packed courtroom at the Patiala House premises. Reacting to the verdict, the ED and the CBI said that they will challenge the verdicts before the Delhi High Court. "The CBI will be taking necessary legal remedies in the matter," CBI spokesperson Abhishek Dayal said. Asked whether an appeal would be filed in the Delhi High Court challenging the verdict, the spokesperson replied in the affirmative.
Dealing a body blow to the CAG's and CBI's estimation that there was loss of Rs 30,984 crore to the Exchequer in allocation of licences for the 2G spectrum, which were scrapped by the Supreme Court on February 2, 2012, Judge Saini in his verdict in the main CBI case held that some people "artfully" arranged a few selected facts and created a scam "when there was none". In all, there were 17 accused, including Raja and Kanimozhi, both leaders of Congress ally DMK, in this case that also included three corporate entities. The three judgements, which together ran into 2,183 pages, included the one that stemmed out of the Enforcement Directorate (ED)'s money laundering case.
"The end result of the above discussion is that, I have absolutely no hesitation in holding that the prosecution (CBI) has miserably failed to prove any charge against any of the accused, made in its well choreographed charge sheet," said Special judge O P Saini. "I may add that many facts recorded in the chargesheet are factually incorrect, like Finance Secretary strongly recommending revision of entry fee, deletion of a clause of draft LOI (letter of intent) by A Raja, recommendations of TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) for revision of entry fee etc," Saini said.
"Non-understanding of issues led to a suspicion of grave wrongdoing where there was none. DoT could neither effectively communicate the issues to others nor others could understand the same. Issues got snowballed when media reports started appearing," he observed.
"There is no evidence on the record produced before the court indicating any criminality in the acts allegedly committed by the accused persons," Judge Saini pointed out. "The chargesheet of the instant case is based mainly on misreading, selective reading, non-reading and out of context reading of the official record," he added.
"The chargesheet is based on some oral statements made by the witnesses during the investigation, which the witnesses have not owned up in the witness box," noted Judge Saini. "Many more things can be said but that would only add to the length of the order," the court said.
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