2G scam: Raja to appear before CBI for questioning tomorrow

CBI officials have sent a notice under Section 160 of the Criminal Procedure Code to Raja to appear before it for questioning.Raja was forced to resign last month in the wake of a controversy over his role in the spectrum allocation that has resulted in an estimated loss of at least Rs 22,000 crore to the exchequer.

Raja is likely to be questioned on the issue of preponing dates for allocation of spectrum and on the role of his relatives in some of the companies which allegedly acted as a front for certain telecom firms which got spectrum between September 2007 and January 2008.

Raja got the telecom portfolio on May 18, 2007 and again got re-elected as a Member of the 15the Lok Sabha and continued as Telecom Minister from May 31, 2009 till November 14, this year before tendering his resignation.

Raja, who flew to Delhi last night from Chennai, had told reporters that he would cooperate with CBI in the probe.

"I will appear before the CBI on December 24 at 10 AM. I will appear for interrogation," he had said.

The Supreme Court has asked CBI and the Enforcement Directorate to submit status reports on their investigations into the 2G scam to it by February 10, when the case will come up for hearing.

The Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) in its report to Parliament had said that the allocation of 2G spectrum at undervalued prices had resulted in the loss of Rs 1.76 lakh crore to the exchequer.

The CBI in its FIR had mentioned the loss as Rs 22,000 crore based on the findings of Central Vigilance Commission which had referred the case to it.

Corporate lobbyist Niira Radia was earlier this week quizzed by the CBI at her South Delhi farmhouse. Radia, who was questioned for four hours, came under the scanner after her taped telephonic conversations with various influential people including industrialists, politicians and journalists became public.

CBI has also questioned former Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) chief Pradip Baijal, a 1966 batch IAS officer of Madhya Pradesh cadre, in connection with the case.The premises of Raja, Baijal and Radia were searched by the CBI earlier this month.

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