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2G case judgement, What the court said in its verdict .

Full text of 2G case verdict

2G case judgement, What the court said in its verdict . December 22, 2017

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A Delhi court acquitted all accused, including former telecom minister A. Raja and DMK Rajya Sabha member Kanimozhi in the 2G spectrum allocation case. Below is the judgment given  by CBI Special Court ..

“I may also add that for the last about seven years,
on all working days, summer vacation included, I religiously sat
in the open Court from 10 AM to 5 PM, awaiting for someone
with some legally admissible evidence in his possession, but all
in   vain.   Not   a   single   soul   turned   up.   This   indicates   that
everybody was going by public perception created by rumour,
gossip and speculation. However, public perception has no place
in judicial proceedings.
About the Prosecution
1812. In the beginning, the prosecution started with the
case with great enthusiasm and ardour. However, as the case
progressed,   it   became   highly   cautious   and   guarded   in   its
attitude making it difficult to find out as to what prosecution
wanted   to   prove.   However,   by   the   end,   the   quality   of
prosecution totally deteriorated and it became directionless and
diffident. Not much is required to be written as the things are
apparent from the perusal of the evidence itself. However, a few
instances   would   suffice   to   indicate   the   behaviour   of   the
prosecution. Several applications and replies were filed in the
Court on behalf of the prosecution. However, in the latter and
also   in   the   final   phase   of   the   trial,   no   senior   officer   or
prosecutor was willing to sign these applications or replies and
the same used to be signed by a junior most officer Inspector
Manoj Kumar posted in the Court. When questioned, the reply

of the regular Sr. PP would be that the learned Spl. PP would
sign it and when the learned Spl. PP was questioned, he would
say that CBI people would sign it. Ultimately, the petition/ reply
would be filed under the signature of Inspector. This shows that
neither any investigator nor any prosecutor was willing to take
any responsibility for what was being filed or said in the Court.
Also, when final arguments started, learned Spl. PP
submitted that he would file written submissions. But instead of
filing written submissions, he started arguing the matter orally
and   argued   it   for   several   months.   On   conclusion   of   final
arguments   for   the   prosecution,   he   did   not   file   written
arguments, but instead submitted that he would file it only
when the defence would file its written arguments. That was
highly   unfair.   The   prosecutor   should   have   filed   his   written
submissions in the first instance or at least contemporaneously
with the oral submissions, so that the defence had a clear view
of  the case  of the prosecution.  The final  arguments  for the
defence started and they kept filing their written submissions
contemporaneously   with   their   oral   submissions.   When   the
rebuttal arguments started only then the prosecution started
filing   its   written   arguments   on   day­to­day   basis,   apart   from
making oral submissions. In a sense, the main address of the
prosecution was made during the rebuttal arguments. In order
to meet this unique situation, the defence had to be given extra
two days for further rebutting the arguments of the prosecution
introduced through written arguments. Not only this, the most
painful part is that learned Spl. PP was not ready to sign the

written submissions filed by him. What is the use of a document
in   a   Court   of   law,   which   is   not   signed   by   anyone?   When
questioned as to why the learned Spl. PP was filing unsigned
written   submissions,   his   reply   would   be   that   some   defence
advocates had also not signed the written submissions. Great
efforts had to be made to persuade the learned Spl. PP to sign
the   written   submissions,   but   all   in   vain.   Thereafter,   written
orders had to be repeatedly passed to make him sign the written
submissions filed by him in the Court under the threat that
unsigned written submissions would not be taken note of. Only
thereafter he yielded and signed the written submissions. When
the learned regular Sr. PP and the Inspector present in the Court
were questioned as to why they were not signing the written
submissions, their reply was that the same were not coming
from their office and were instead coming from the office of the
learned Spl. PP. Their submission was that unless these written
arguments were processed in their office, they would not sign it.
This shows that the learned Spl. PP and the regular prosecutor
were   moving   in   two   different   directions   without   any
coordination. Many more things can be said but that would only
add to the length of the order.
1813. In the end, examination of the action or inaction of
officials belonging to various departments, that is, DoT, Law
Ministry, Finance Ministry and PMO, shows that the controversy
about the issue of LOIs on 10.01.2008 and subsequent grant of
licences and allocation of spectrum arose due to unnecessary
questions and objections raised by some of the officials and

unwarranted suggestions put forward by others. None of these
suggestions were carried to logical conclusion and were left
unaddressed in between.  These were used by others to create
unnecessary controversy.
About the DoT Files
1814. It may be noted that the policy decisions of DoT are
scattered in different official files and, as such, are difficult to
trace and understand. For example, the introduction of UAS
licensing regime and issue of addendum to NTP­99 was dealt
with   in   file   D­591.   The   first­come   first­served   policy   was
enunciated in file D­592. TRAI Recommendations were sought
vide   noting   in   file   D­5   and   were   processed   and   approved
therein.   The   issue   of   stoppage   of   processing   of   pending
applications for UAS Licences awaiting TRAI Recommendations
was dealt with in file D­44. The issue of sending a reference to
learned  SG was  dealt  with in file  D­7 and many important
policy decisions were taken in this file. The issue of cut­off date
was dealt with by opening a new file, that is, file D­6. Note
dated   07.01.2008,   Ex   PW   60/O­1,   recorded   by   Sh.   R.   K.
Chandolia for sending letters exchanged between Sh. A. Raja
and Hon’ble PM to Sh. A. K. Srivastava, have been placed in file
D­598. These are only a few examples of how policy issues are
strewn around here and there in a disorderly manner. Because
of   this,   it   becomes   very   difficult   for   outside   agencies   and
institutions to understand issues in proper perspective, leaving
scope for controversy.
Furthermore, files are also opened and closed too
quickly in an haphazard manner even for a small issue and
there is no systematic way of dealing with issues in one file in a
sequential   manner   at   one   place.   Documents   relating   to   one
issue are placed or inserted whimsically in any file without any
regard for relevance of the issue. It becomes very difficult to
know as to how many files were opened for dealing with a
particular   issue   and   why.     It   also   becomes   very   difficult   to
arrange   and   align   such   files   in   consecutive   manner   to
understand the progress of the case from beginning to end. For
example,   a   meeting   was   held   in   DoT   on   06.11.2007   and
consequent to that, note dated 07.11.2007, Ex PW 36/B­10,
was recorded for processing of applications and issue of LOIs.
However, there are no minutes of this meeting, except reference
in the above note. The officers disowned the content of this
note   by   giving   different   interpretations   and   it   became   very
difficult to know as to which officer expressed what view as
everyone blamed others.   Not only this, PMO was informed
about   this   decision   on   the   same   day   vide   letter   dated
06.11.2007, but a copy of this letter was placed in file D­6,
which is wholly unconnected with the issue. When documents
are   not   traceable   easily   and   readily   and   policy   issues   are
scattered haphazardly in so many files, it becomes difficult for
anyone to understand the issues. Non­understanding of issues
in proper perspective led to a suspicion of grave wrongdoing,
where there was none, at least as per record of the Court. This
factor greatly contributed to the controversy in the instant case

as the DoT could neither effectively communicate the issues to
others nor others could understand the same. The issues got
snowballed when media reports started appearing. One of the
first   media   reports   was   a   news   item   dated   08.11.2007   in
Economic   Times   captioned   “Jarring   Call:   Grabbing   precious
spectrum for a song”, Ex PW 60/K­143. This was also dealt with
in file D­6 vide note dated 08.11.2007, Ex PW 36/E­7, recorded
by   Sh.   A.   K.   Srivastava.   This   news   item   highlighted   that
MOC&IT had not accepted the Recommendations of TRAI and
DoT for auction of 2G spectrum and thus, a loss of Rs. 10,000
crore would be caused to the Exchequer. This news item was
rightly denied by the DoT as factually incorrect. However, on
account of the various actions and inactions of the officials, as
noted above, nobody believed the version of DoT and a huge
scam   was   seen   by   everyone   where   there   was   none.   These
factors compelled people to conjecture about a big scam. Thus,
some people created a scam by artfully arranging a few selected
facts   and   exaggerating   things   beyond   recognition   to
astronomical levels.
1815. The   lack   of   clarity   in   the   policies   as   well   as
Guidelines also added to the confusion. The Guidelines have
been framed in such technical language that meaning of many
terms are not clear even to DoT officers. When the officers of
the department themselves do not understand the departmental
guidelines and their glossary, how can they blame companies/
others for violation of the same. The worst thing is that despite
knowing that the meaning of a particular term was ambiguous

and may lead to problems, no steps were taken to rectify the
situation. This continued year after year. For example, in the
instant   case,   large   part   of   the   controversy   relates   to
interpretation of clause 8, dealing with substantial equity. The
terms   used   in   this   clause   include   “Associate”,   “Promoter”,
“Stake” etc. No one in the DoT knows their meaning, despite
the fact that the Guidelines were framed by the DoT itself. The
interpretation of these words is haunting the DoT since these
words were first used, but no steps were taken to assign them a
specific   meaning.   In   such   circumstances,   DoT   officers
themselves are responsible for the entire mess.
Furthermore, notes recorded by various officers in
the files are in highly illegible handwriting which are difficult to
read and understand.  A wrong impression and understanding is
created by such badly written notes.  Furthermore, the notes are
either cryptic, even telegraphic, or extremely lengthy, recorded
in highly technical and layered language, which cannot easily
be   understood   by   others,   but   can   conveniently   be   used   for
finding fault with the superior authorities for agreeing to or
disagreeing from it, as the case may be.  Notes have also been
recorded on extreme margins of the note sheet, some of which
have become frayed with the passage of time and cannot be
read and understood properly. Non­understanding of the official
notes by outside agency creates an impression of wrongdoing.
1816. Thus,   the   genesis   of   the   instant   case   lies   not   so
much in the actions of Sh. A. Raja but in the action/inaction of
others, referred to above. There is no material on record to

show that Sh. A. Raja was mother lode of conspiracy in the
instant case. There is also no evidence of his no­holds­barred
immersion in any wrongdoing, conspiracy or corruption.
1817. There is no evidence on the record produced before
the   Court   indicating   any   criminality   in   the   acts   allegedly
committed by the accused persons relating to fixation of cut­off
date, manipulation of first­come first­served policy, allocation of
spectrum to dual technology applicants, ignoring ineligibility of
STPL and Unitech group companies, non­revision of entry fee
and transfer of Rs. 200 crore to Kalaignar TV (P) Limited as
illegal   gratification.   The   charge   sheet   of   the   instant   case   is
based mainly on misreading, selective reading, non­reading and
out of context reading of the official record. Further, it is based
on   some   oral   statements   made   by   the   witnesses   during
investigation, which the witnesses have not owned up in the
witness­box.   Lastly,   if   statements   were   made   orally   by   the
witnesses, the same were contrary to the official record and
thus, not acceptable in law.
1818. I may add that many facts recorded in the charge
sheet   are   factually   incorrect,   like   Finance   Secretary   strongly
recommending revision of entry fee, deletion of a clause of draft
LOI by Sh. A. Raja, Recommendations of TRAI for revision of
entry fee etc.
The end result of the above discussion is that, I have
absolutely  no hesitation in holding  that the prosecution has
miserably failed to prove any charge against any of the accused,
made in its well choreographed charge sheet.
CBI Vs. A. Raja and others
1819. Accordingly, all accused are entitled to be acquitted
and are acquitted.
1820. The bail bonds of the accused are hereby cancelled
and sureties stand discharged. Documents, if any, of the sureties
be returned to them after cancellation of endorsement thereon,
if any.
1821. In   terms   of   provisions   of   Section  437A  CrPC,  all
accused are directed to furnish bail bond in the sum of Rs. Five
lac with one surety in the like amount for appearance before the
Hon’ble Appellate Court, as and when required.
1822. I also record my deep appreciation for Advocates for
both parties for the hard work put in by them during the trial of
this   voluminous,   technical   and   complex   case,   the   record   of
which runs into about three­four lac pages.
1823. File be consigned to the Record Room.
Announced in open Court   (O.P. Saini)
today on 21.12.2017        Spl. Judge/CBI(04)/ PMLA
(2G Spectrum Cases)
New Delhi

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