2G scam accused to bring five defence witnesses

2G scam accused to bring five defence witnesses

The accused in the 2G scam related money laundering case on Tuesday proposed to bring five witnesses in the special CBI court to counter enforcement directorate’s allegations against them.

According to the list submitted by the accused in the court, Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) patriarch M Karunanidhi’s wife Dayalu Ammal, his elder sister’s son P Amirtham and one of the Swan Telecom promoters Vinod Goenka will bring one defense witness each for their examination in the court.

DMK-owned Kalaignar TV Private Limited, which too is facing trial in the case, proposed to bring two defense witnesses in the special court.

Former telecom minister A Raja, DMK MP Kanimozhi and other accused in the case, however, did not submit any proposal before the court for bringing witnesses in their defense.

Concluding the recording of the statements of all 19 accused in the case, the special CBI Judge OP Saini had on Friday directed them to submit a list of defense witnesses by Tuesday.

The court is likely to start examination of defense witnesses from April 6. One of the lawyers said those accused, who did not submit any proposal to bring defense witnesses on Tuesday, may do so before April 6.

The trial of the case, registered by the enforcement directorate (ED) against Raja, Kanimozhi and 17 others under Prevention of Money Laundering Act, has reached its fag end.

After the examination of the defense witnesses, the special CBI court would fix a date for final argument.

A total of 25 prosecution witnesses were examined and cross-examined in the case since the court began recording of evidence on November 17 last year.

The special court initiated the trial of the case after framing of charges against the accused in October 31 last year.

According to ED, Raja illegally favoured accused Shahid Balwa-owned Swan Telecom Private Limited (STPL) in getting unified access licence. For this, eligibility criteria were changed and information about it were leaked much in advance to “select few” including STPL so that they could jump the queue and be ready with the demand drafts as and when they were asked to furnish the application fee for unified access service licenses of telecom.

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