SC wants affidavit on Singh's silence

SC wants affidavit on Singh's silence

In an obvious move to fix accountability, the Supreme Court directed the Centre to file an affidavit on why the Prime Minister remained silent for nearly 11 months over a request seeking sanction for the prosecution of former telecom minister A Raja for the 2G spectrum scam.  

“The matter is extremely serious,” the court said and asked the Centre to file the affidavit by Saturday and fixed the hearing for November 23.

The directive comes two days after the apex court expressed its annoyance over the 11-month-long inaction of the Prime Minister over a complaint made by former MP Subramanian Swamy against Raja pertaining to the allocation of spectrum to telecom companies for 2G services.

The Bench, comprising Justices G S Singhvi and A K Ganguly, said that mere presenting of files was not enough and asked the government to state the reasons for the delay so that it can fix accountability if there was any concealment of facts.

The Bench hearing the 2G spectrum case asked Solicitor General Gopal Subramaniam to examine the relevant files before giving his response on why it took the government a month short of a year to tell Swamy that prosecution would be “premature” at this stage.
The solicitor general defended the Prime Minister’s Office saying that since the Central Bureau of Investigation was probing the alleged scam, the “sanctioning authority” was perfectly within its rights to inform Swamy that it would await the outcome of the investigation before deliberating on whether Raja should be prosecuted or not.
But the Bench left no room for any confusion, pillorying the government by data and facts.

Swamy had filed a petition before the Prime Minister on November 29, 2008, seeking sanction to prosecute Raja and the CBI had lodged an FIR on October 21, 2009, against “unknown persons”.

On March 19, 2010, the secretary in the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) on behalf of the PMO replied to Swamy saying the petition was “premature”.
“What happened between November 29, 2008, and October 21, 2010?” the Bench asked.

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