Delhi High Court admits CBI appeal against acquittal of former telecom minister A Raja, others in 2G scam case

The Delhi High Court on Thursday admitted the appeal moved by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) challenging the acquittal of former telecom minister and current Lok Sabha MP, A Raja and others in connection to the 2G spectrum allocation scam case.

Justice Dinesh Kumar Sharma passed the order on the leave to appeal filed by CBI. The verdict was reserved on March 14. Notably, leave to appeal is permission granted to appeal against the decision of a court.

The bench observed that the court after going through the material on record, the impugned judgment and the submissions made at bar by both the sides is of the opinion that a prima facie has been made out which requires deeper examination of the entire evidence. The judgment in the matter followed almost 6 years after CBI moved court challenging the order of acquittal.

The Delhi High Court heard the matter on March 21, 2021 for the first time. Subsequently, a total of 125 hearings took place before several judges. Notably, it was CBI’s case that there were glaring illegalities in the trial court order acquitting all the accused in the case. Senior Advocate Sanjay Jain, Senior Special Public Prosecutor, represented CBI.

Earlier on December 21, 2017, a special court here had acquitted A. Raja, DMK MP Kanimozhi and others from various offences arising out of the alleged Rs 1.76 lakh crores 2G scam case. Apart from the former telecom minister and Kanimozhi, the court had also acquitted former telecom secretary Siddharth Behura, Raja’s former private secretary R K Chandolia, Unitech Limited MD Sanjay Chandra and three top executives of the Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group (RADAG) Gautam Doshi, Surendra Pipara and Hari Nair.

Furthermore, the special court had also acquitted 19 accused persons in the ED case.The court had acquitted Shahid Balwa, Vinod Goenka, Asif Balwa, Rajiv Aggarwal, Karim Morani, P. Amirtham, M.K. Dayalu Ammal and Sharad Kumar along with A Raja and Kanimozhi in the money laundering case.

The ED had moved the Delhi High Court against the acquittal order in March, 2018. Later, the CBI also filed a plea challenging the acquittal. In the chargesheet filed in 2011, the CBI had alleged that Raja had conspired with his former private secretary R.K. Chandolia to shift the cut-off date for consideration of applications to be received up to September 25, 2007 for allotment of 2G spectrum in an attempt to illegally benefit Unitech MD Sanjay Chandra, Swan Telecom’s Shahid Balwa and Vinod Goenka. In addition, the chargesheet filed by the ED had also named nine companies as accused. 

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