Raja accuses Vahanvati of telling lies

Raja accuses Vahanvati of telling lies

Former telecom minister A Raja, the main accused in the 2G scam, has told the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and then external affairs minister Pranab Mukherjee were aware of all the policy decisions taken by him in connection with allocation of radio waves.

Raja, in his response to the questionnaire sent by the JPC probing the 2G spectrum scam, accused Attorney General G E Vahanvati of telling a “series of untruths” against him. Raja, who was denied permission to appear before the panel despite his repeated requests, said in his 17-page note that he had “exchanged letters” with the prime minister on November 2, 2007 on various issues relating to the telecom sector and also had subsequent personal discussions on the subject.

“It was agreed in these discussions that the minister of communication and IT would have discussions with Pranab Mukherjee since he was heading the group of ministers on vacation of spectrum,” he said in his March 13 note to the JPC.

He said discussions were held between him and Mukherjee in December 2007 on subscriber-base criteria for allotment of additional spectrum, issue of dual technology and issue of new licences.

During the discussions, Vahanvati, the then solicitor general, was also present during the meeting. 

Hitting out at Vahanvati for his contention before the JPC that the controversial press release regarding 2G licences was changed at the last minute by him (Raja) in 2008 with a different pen, Raja said the solicitor general had defended the same press release for two years in different courts without raising any question on its authenticity.

Raja said Vahanvati’s claim that he was not involved in any policy decision by the government was not correct as his note to Mukherjee contained the “essence” of the entire policy of the department of telecom (DoT).

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