CBI searches DoT offices; but Raja rules out resignation

 
A RajaHours after the CBI officials visited Sanchar Bhawan to probe allegations of “serious irregularities” in awarding licences in the wake of charges of huge revenue losses, Raja told reporters late on Thursday night that the “question of my resignation does not arise.
“All decisions on spectrum licensing have been taken in accordance with procedures laid down by TRAI and in consultations with the Prime Minister,” he said.

The CBI on Thursday said it had registered a case against unknown officials of the Department of Telecom and unknown private persons and companies under the charge of criminal conspiracy and corruption under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Ever since the licences were issued last year, there has been widespread criticism that there could have been a loss of thousands of crores to the exchequer on account of irregularities.

Raja said nowhere has CBI pointed out that the Minister has had a role in spectrum allotment, an issue that is alleged to have caused a revenue loss of Rs 22,000 crore to the Government.

“I stand by my reply in Parliament and I have already justified the major policy decisions,” he said, adding that he did not expect the BJP or for that matter AIADMK to support him on the issue.

He was replying to a question about BJP’s demand for his resignation in the wake of CBI conducting searches in the Ministry.

Raja said the policy decision to issue licences to new players to bring competition in the telecom sector was taken as per the recommendation ofthe Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) dated February 27, 2007.

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