Supreme Court To Consider Setting Up Bench For Pleas Relating To 2G Spectrum Case
A telecom tower stands on top of a building. (Photographer: Susana Gonzalez/Bloomberg)

Supreme Court To Consider Setting Up Bench For Pleas Relating To 2G Spectrum Case

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The Supreme Court said on Wednesday that it would consider constituting a bench to deal with the pleas relating to the 2G spectrum allocation scam case in which all persons including former Telecom Minister A Raja and Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam Member of Parliament Kanimozhi were acquitted by a lower court in 2017.

A bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde was urged by Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the investigative agencies, the Central Bureau of Investigation and the Enforcement Directorate, that a bench be set up to deal with various pleas relating to the 2G case.

"We will constitute a bench in January," said the bench, also comprising Justices BR Gavai and Surya Kant.

Presently, the Delhi High Court is hearing separate appeals of the CBI and the ED against acquittal of all the accused in the 2G scam cases.

The top court, which had monitored the 2G probe after taking note of the public interest litigations filed by non-governmental organisation 'CPIL' and Bharatiya Janata Party leader Subramanian Swamy, on Feb. 2, 2012 cancelled the 122 2G spectrum licences granted by former telecom minister Raja on the ground that they were issued in a "totally arbitrary and unconstitutional" manner.

However, a special court had on Dec. 21, 2017 acquitted Raja, Kanimozhi and others.

It has acquitted 17 others, including DMK supremo M Karunanidhi's wife Dayalu Ammal, Vinod Goenka, Asif Balwa, film producer Karim Morani, P Amirtham and Sharad Kumar, Director of Kalaignar TV in the ED case.

On the same day, the trial court had also acquitted former telecom secretary Siddharth Behura, Raja's erstwhile private secretary RK Chandolia, Unitech Ltd Managing Director Sanjay Chandra and three top executives of Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group ) -- Gautam Doshi, Surendra Pipara and Hari Nair, in the CBI's 2G case.

Swan Telecom promoters Shahid Usman Balwa and Vinod Goenka and directors of Kusegaon Fruits and Vegetables Pvt. Ltd. Asif Balwa and Rajiv Agarwal were also acquitted in the CBI case.

The apex court, in its 2012 verdict, had cancelled the 2G spectrum licenses given by Raja in January, 2008 during the tenure of UPA-I government, on which the CAG had assumed the presumptive loss of up to Rs 1.76 lakhs.

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