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18 Apr 2024, Edition - 3201, Thursday

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World News

Congress Taking 2G Judgement As A Badge Of Honour, Says Arun Jaitley



NEW DELHI: After a Delhi court today acquitted all the 17 accused in the 2G spectrum case, including former telecom minister A Raja and DMK leader M Kanimozhi, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley pointed out that the Supreme Court had in 2012 held that the 2G policy of the Congress-led government was “corrupt and dishonest” and cancelled all 122 licences handed by Mr Raja.

A judge today said no evidence had been found against the accused. “I have no hesitation in holding that the prosecution has miserably failed to prove the charges and all the accused are acquitted of the charges,” said the judge. Congress leaders, including former prime minister Manmohan Singh, say the verdict proves that the charges of massive corruption against the UPA government were unfounded.

Mr Jaitley scoffed that the Congress was taking today’s ruling as a “badge of honour” that the 2G policy of the UPA government was honest policy.

“That this was a corrupt, dishonest policy was upheld by the Supreme Court in February 2012. Each and every case of spectrum allocation was quashed by the Supreme Court as unfair and arbitrary.”

Mr Jaitley said a first-come-first-serve policy, with a “huge amount of arbitrariness” was followed by the UPA, intended at serving only a selective few. “The first come first served policy was converted to the first pay first served policy and a chosen few were informed about the change of policy…the favourites had their bank drafts prepared,” he said.

“On the basis of all this, in February 2012, the Supreme Court upheld the challenge and cancelled the policy of first come first served and the government was directed to have a fresh policy through auction,” he added.

Ripping into the Congress for interpreting todays acquittal as a “certificate”, the Finance Minister question: “From this entire scam, who is liable? I am sure investigating agencies will have a close look at it and decide… The fact that this was a corrupt policy intended to promote corruption and there was a loss goes by the Supreme Court verdict and subsequent auctions.”

While cancelling all licences issued by Mr Raja, the Supreme Court had said that the licences had been allotted in “an unconstitutional and arbitrary manner.” At the time, the Congress-led government had called it an indictment of the previous BJP government’s legacy of allotting licenses on a first-come-first -served basis.

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