2G case: SC clears Chidu, dismisses Swamy petition
The court will decide on a petition filed by Janata Party leader Subramaniam Swamy alleging that P Chidambaram should be included in the list of accused in the 2G spectrum sale scam.
The Supreme Court today dismissed Janata Party leader Subramanian Swamy's plea, seeking that Finance Minister Chidambaram be probed for his alleged involvement in the 2G spectrum sale scam along with others accused in the case, including former bureaucrats and former telecom minister A Raja.
"No case is made out against P Chidambaram and the special leave petition filed against the judgment of the special CBI court is not liable to be entertained. Accordingly, the SLP is rejected," a bench comprising justices G S Singhvi and K S Radhakrishnan said.
In its ruling, the court said it had considered all the material on record and concluded that there was no deliberate act or abuse of position by Chidambaram, in relation to the 2G scam. It added that there was no case or evidence that could sufficiently infer criminal conspiracy between Chidambaram and A Raja.
The judgement also said a mere meeting between the Finance Minister and the former Telecom Minister could not be extended to mean that a conspiracy was afoot, and had also questioned allegations by Swamy that he had bestowed undue favours to two telecom companies.
However, the petitioner Subramanian Swamy said that the court's judgement was not based on the prayers or pleas in his petition.
"I think this is a very bad judgement and I will seek a review," Subramanian Swamy said.
The judgement is based on something that I did not argue, the Janata Party leader said.
However, the Congress party welcomed the judgement saying that it only vindicated their stand that the Finance Minister was innocent.
"The matter should now be allowed to abate," Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari said, adding that he hoped it would also help in the functioning of the Joint Parliamentary Committee probing the scam.
The court on 24 April had reserved its order on whether to issue a notice to Finance Minister P Chidambaram on a plea filed by Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy, seeking to make him a co-accused along with former telecom minister A Raja in the 2G pricing case.
The apex court bench of Justice GS Singhvi and Justice KS Radhakrishnan also reserved the order on Centre for Public Interest Litigation (CPIL) plea for a court-monitored CBI probe into Chidambaram’s role as the then finance minister in deciding 2G spectrum prices.
Swamy has challenged special CBI Judge OP Saini rejecting Swamy’s plea to make Chidambaram a co-accused.
The Janata Party leader has argued that Chidambaram should be made a co-accused in the case along with former telecom minister A Raja because he also had a role in deciding the spectrum pricing and allowing telecom companies to off-load shares to foreign firms.
He had said that the evidence brought before the trial court was sufficient to show that Chidambaram, as the then finance minister, had prima facie committed offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act and other criminal laws.
Swamy’s plea was, however, rejected on 4 February, by the Special CBI Court, trying the 2G case, which had said Chidambaram did not indulge in any criminal conspiracy or derive any pecuniary advantage in the decisions taken with Raja.
The trial court had said that Chidambaram, the Finance Minister at the time of controversial allocation of 2G spectrum in 2008, was only party to two decisions — keeping spectrum prices at 2001 level and dilution of equity by two companies — which was “not per se criminal”.
The Supreme Court had on 2 February left the special court to decide on Swamy’s plea to try Chidambaram in the case.
The trial court then rejected the private criminal complaint filed by Swamy, saying it was without merits.
It said Swamy could not bring evidence on record to show that Chidambaram was acting with “corrupt” and “illegal” motive and the case against him was distinguishable from other accused who are facing trial in the 2G case.
with inputs from Agencies
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