2G: CBI to give report on Maran to apex court
New Delhi, Nov 1 (IANS) The CBI told the Supreme Court Thursday that it would file a status report next week on its probe against former telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran for his alleged involvement in the controversial Maxis-Aircel telecom deal.
Additional Solicitor General Harin Raval told the apex court bench of Justice G.S. Singhvi and Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan that the Central Bureau of Investigation’s (CBI) status report would also include other dimensions of the investigation undertaken by the agency in the 2G matter.
The court declined to pass any direction on the plea of Centre for Public Interest Litigation (CPIL) counsel Prashant Bhushan plea that the CBI be asked to submit a status report on its probe into allocation of excess spectrum to the telecom operators during late telecom minister Pramod Mahajan’s tenure in 2002.
The judges said that let the investigating agency submit its status report and then it would decided what direction was to be given to it.
The court said that the investigating agency was free to proceed against NGO Telecom Watchdog’s secretary Anil Kumar for making a volte face on his earlier allegation on the involvement of Maran in the Maxis-Aircel deal.
The apex court April 11 directed Sharma to explain his turnaround in stating that Maran, when he was the telecom minister, compelled Chennai-based businessman C. Sivasankaran to sell his stake in mobile telephony provider Aircel to Singapore-based Maxis.
The court said this when Raval told the court that the investigating agency was initiating proceedings against Anil Kumar.
Telecom Watchdog had sought investigation into the role of Dayanidhi Maran, alleging that the former telecom minister created a situation where Sivasankaran – the original owner of Aircel – was forced to sell-off his entire stake in the company to Malaysia-based Maxis owned by T. Ananda Krishnan.
The court took on board the amended cause page of Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy’s petition seeking contempt proceedings against Finance Minister P. Chidambaram and his son Kirit Chidambaram for initiating defamation proceedings against him in a Singapore court.
The court had asked Swamy to include two companies owned by Kirit Chidambaram as respondents in his contempt petition. The Singapore arm of Advantage Strategic Consulting had initiated defamation proceedings against Swamy.
Swamy said that Advantage Strategic Consulting Singapore (ASC Singapore) allegedly held by Chidambaram’s son had filed a defamation case against him for pointing to questionable transactions between Advantage Strategic Consulting and Aircel, when the Aircel-Maxis deal was underway.
Swamy contended that Advantage Strategic Consulting Singapore was the wholly-owned subsidiary of an India-based company by similar name.
He contended that the defamation proceedings were intended to fetter him from pursuing 2G cases.