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2G verdict: Was right in assessment of evidence, says ex-CBI chief Sinha

The charge sheet in the case was filed before Sinha took over as the CBI chief, agency sources said

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

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The verdict in the case has come as a vindication to his views, former director Ranjit Sinha, who had questioned the quality of evidence presented in the case, said.

The charge sheet in the case was filed before Sinha took over as the chief, agency sources said. In 2014, a note had emerged in the media carrying Sinha's direction to the then DIG Santosh Rastogi to reinvestigate the matter in the light of new evidence, which contradicted the stand of the agency.

When asked about the verdict of the special court on Thursday, Sinha said, "I am morally convinced that I was right in my assessment of the evidence."

He refused to say anything further on the order.

According to reports, he had recommended to the investigating officer that Clause 8 of the Unified Access Service License (UASL) Guidelines should apply only to licences and not to the applicants.

The clause says that no single company or person shall have substantial equity (10 per cent or more) holding in more than one licensee company in the same service area.

It was reported that Sinha's interpretation could have damaged the agency's case against Reliance and Shahid Balwa.

Meanwhile, former CBI Director AP Singh, during whose tenure the agency filed the FIR and charge sheet, vouched for the investigating officers, saying they were excellent.

Singh refused to comment on the happenings in the courtroom today, restricting himself to the investigation part.

"There were two companies -- Swan Telecom and Unitech -- and our investigation shows that there was attempt to favour these two companies," he told the NDTV in an interview.

Singh said the crux of the charges was in 60-page charge sheet wherein the agency had found out irregularities in the announcement of cutoff dates, payments made through circuitous route from DB Realty to Kalaignar TV.

He said Rs 200 crore went from Swan telecom to Kalaignar through companies linked with Swan which was returned after the case was filed.

According to the CBI probe, there was strong suspicion that money was paid as bribe to Kalaignar TV.

The companies took loans at 15-17 per cent and gave it on five per cent. That is a direct link, he said.

Former telecom minister and MP Kanimozhi were today acquitted by a special court in the case. Fifteen other accused in the case including three companies were also acquitted.

First Published: Fri, December 22 2017. 01:48 IST