Closing in on the heels of those accused in the 2G scam, a special court in New Delhi has rejected the bail plea of five top corporate executives who have been named in the 2G scam chargesheet.
It has now been declared by Judge OP Saini that the 5 executives in question, namely, Vinod Goenka, director, Swan Telecom, Sanjay Chandra, MD, Unitech and 3 top ADAG officials, Gautam Doshi, group managing director, R-ADAG, Hari Nair, company secretary, R-ADAG, and Surendra Pipara, group president, R-ADAG, are likely to be sent to Tihar jail to join others accused in the 2G scam, including former telecom minister, A.Raja, Siddhartha Behura, Raja’s personal secretary, R. K. Chandolia, ex-IAS officer and Raja’s close aide, and Swan Telecom promoter Shahid Usman Balwa.
Their interim bail plea has been rejected by Patiala court and five accused will be taken into judicial custody and sent to Tihar jail.
The top honchos in question named in the CBI 2G scam chargesheet, were not arrested last week during the court trial when they originally applied for bail, but today have been arrested, with the reason given that they will not be able to influence witnesses while out on bail. Testifying against them today, certain witnesses said that the 3 R-ADAG officials were instrumental in hiding details pertaining to Swan Telecom, allowing the incumbent operator controversial 2G spectrum allotment.
The Rs 30, 984 cr loss to the exchequer in the allocation of 2G spectrum, due to 2G spectrum being given out in 2008 at 2001 prices, has been intensified by the number of organizations and top corporate personalities and journalists involved in the case, including 8 operators- Unitech, Swan Telecom, Loop Telecom, Videocon Telecommunications, STel, RCom, Vodafone Essar and MTS.
At a time when corporate lobbyist Nira Radia has been evasive about her taped conversations with Tata group head, Ratan Tata, as well as other key personalities accused in the scam, recent talk of the 2G tapes being tampered with and sliced, as mentioned by Prashant Bhushan, member of the drafting committee for the Lokpal anti-corruption Bill in Parliament, presents yet another twist to the increasingly murky tale.
By Beryl Menezes