Behura names RBI governor in 2G case

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By The Telegraph Online
  • Published 27.07.11

New Delhi, Jul 27 (PTI): Jailed former Telecom Secretary Siddhartha Behura today dragged RBI Governor D Subbarao in the 2G case accusing him of not revising the spectrum licence fee and claimed he had no role to play except implementing the government's policy.

Behura's submission before a court targeting the former Finance Secretary reflected the trend of the 2G scam accused naming top leaders and officials after former Telecom Miniser A Raja named Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister P Chidambaram and Attorney General G E Vahanvati over the last two days.

Opposing the framing of charges of corruption and other penal offences against him in the case, Behura told the Special CBI judge O P Saini that Subbarao had decided against revising the entry fee of Rs 1,659 crore for 2G licence and if he is not an accused in this case, he (Behura) too should not have been put on trial.

”Subbarao finalised the decision taken in the meeting of December 4, 2007 that the policy stood approved and the entry fees (of Rs 1,659 crore fixed in 2001 during NDA's regime) need not be revised,” Behura's counsel Aman Lekhi told the court. Behura is behind bars for the past six months.

”Even the Finance Minister (then P Chidambaram) was also present in the meeting (held on December 4, 2007). If Subbarao, who was part of the Finance Ministry, did commit no wrong, how come I did it.

Going by the same principle, if I have been made an accused then Subbarao should also be made an accused,” he said.

The former bureaucrat defended himself against the charges against him, saying the acts done by him were in pursuance of the government policy and he did not commit any wrong that caused a loss to the exchequer.

Asserting that there was “not an iota of evidence” against him, Behura said he was only a civil servant who had no role to play except implementing the government's policy.

In arguments that he be discharged in the case, Behura contended that he joined the telecom ministry in January 2008 and by then all the major policy decisions like those on spectrum pricing, the entry fee and the first-come-first-served policy had already been decided.

”The persons concerned have been made witnesses in the case and unfortunately Behura, who had no role in it, has been made an accused. This is nothing but an arbitrary selection of people as accused and witnesses. CBI has to do a lot of explanation,” Behura's counsel said.

Behura was arrested on February 2, 2011 for his alleged involvement in the 2G scam. Under the first charge sheet filed in April 2, he is accused of committing criminal conspiracy, cheating, forgery and criminal misconduct by a public servant.