By Vijay Darda | 25-12-2017
A major question stems from the 2G spectrum case that is based on suspicion and rumours without any evidence
There is an ancient tale. Someone told a person that a crow took his ear away. The person did not try to check his ear and started chasing the crow instead. The crow flew away somewhere. For a long time after that, the person remained worried that the crow had taken his ear away. One day a wise person told him: “Brother, your ear is where it should be. Why don’t you just check it!”
The verdict of the CBI Court in 2G spectrum case spontaneously reminded me of this old story! How surprising and tragic that the then Union telecom minister along with the senior officials had to suffer in jail for the scandal that was not perpetrated at all on the ground and the conspiracy that was never hatched! Seven years later when the special judge OP Saini of the CBI court delivered the verdict, the fact came to the light and we learnt actually what the matter was. The special judge Saini wrote in his verdict: “I kept on waiting for seven years, every day of work; even in summer holidays, I sat in this court every morning from 10 am to 5 pm and waited that someone armed with legally acceptable evidence would come, but no one came. This indicates that all people were victims of a common perception, which stemmed from rumours, gossip and speculation.
The special judge Saini’s comment explains just how expert our system is in creating unrest. In fact, in 2008, the allocation of 2G spectrum was done in accordance with the first-come first-served policy. In 2010, the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) said the allocation was done at the rate prevailing in 2001; had the allocation been done at the current rate, then the government could have got `1,76,000 crore more. The Opposition seized the point and started attacking the government by making the same remarks. No one appreciated that the rate prevailing in 2001 was applicable at the time the allocation was made. The attack was so strong that it was declared the mother of all Indian scandals.
The CBI started investigations and the then Union telecom minister A Raja had to resign. In 2011, he and Kanimozhi, daughter of former chief minister of Tamil Nadu M Karunanidhi, were arrested. Raja was accused of directly accepting money while Kanimozhi was said to have taken a bribe of `200 crore for her TV channel from industrialist Shahid Balwa and in return Shahid Balwa’s companies were allocated the spectrum by A Raja in a wrong manner. The then Union telecom secretary Siddhartha Behura and A Raja’s former private secretary R K Chandolia were also arrested. Besides Swan Telecom’s general manager Shahid Balwa, former general manager of Unitech Sanjay Chandra, Swan Telecom’s director Vinod Goenka, Anil Ambani Group’s Gautam Doshi, Surendra Pipara and Hari Nair, Kusgaon Fruits and Vegetable Private Limited director Rajeev Agrawal, as also the company’s partner Asif Balwa, Cineyug Media and Entertainment director Karim Morani were also arrested. All of them languished in jail for different periods of time from 15 months to 12 months!
All the accused in the 2G spectrum case have been acquitted. The court found no evidence of any conspiracy or any scam! Now, a serious question arises as to who will make up for the time they spent in jail or restore their social standing or compensate for the mental anguish they suffered without any rhyme or reason? Who is guilty of defaming them, and will the government send those people behind the bars, who, on the basis of mere suspicion and rumours orchestrated the imprisonment of the well-known people of this country?
It is a very big crime in my eyes and I want that such people must be put in prison so that they will think hundreds of times before levelling accusations against any innocent person. The question arises is how were these people arrested without proof? Were there some people conspiring against the then government? I am raising this question because the fake scandal has inflicted the highest damage on the Congress.
Actually this is not the only case. Due to political rivalry, more such cases were created and innocents were implicated. The scams which have not happened, those who did not get a single penny were told they were involved in scams worth millions and billions of rupees. The way in which the truth has emerged in the 2G case, it will come out in the same way in other cases too. Those who play politics will have to understand that for some time somebody can be disturbed but ultimately the truth prevails. The government should take action against such conspirators who create ‘scam’ without proof.
Before I conclude…
A lot of greetings to the cricketers of Vidarbha Ranji Team! By reaching the finals of the Ranji Trophy, it has proved that there is strength in Vidarbha too! Vidarbha has been considered backward vis-a-vis cricket. A player or two have been bringing laurels on the basis of their personal talent, but this is for the first time that the Vidarbha Ranji Team has reached the finals of the Ranji Trophy. Let us hope Vidarbha emerges winner in the finals!