Become approver, Shourie tells Raja (Lead)

February 25th, 2011 - 5:30 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Feb 25 (IANS) Former communications minister Arun Shourie was questioned by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Friday for around three hours in connection with the 2G spectrum scam, officials said.Referring to former communications minister A. Raja, Shourie said: “Raja should become an approver of the agency and spill the beans. He did not follow the rules and the main question remains: who took the money, which all telecom companies were favoured, and who are the officers involved in this scam?”

Accusing the government of misleading the nation, Shourie told reporters after coming out of the CBI office: “What were senior members of the government doing when all this was happening? Were they sleeping? The government wants to derail this issue.”

The former minister also blamed Raja for overlooking pending licenses for his personal financial gains.

“There were many pending licenses and Raja did not consider them but asked for new applications. He changed the rules accordingly to oblige his favourites,” added Shourie.

Shourie, who held the communications portfolio between January 2003 and May 2004, was questioned on his role in awarding licences to operators on a first come-first-served basis and other crucial telecom policy decisions taken by the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government.

Raja along with former telecom secretary Siddarth Behura and Raja’s former personal secretary R.K. Chandolia were arrested Feb 2 for their alleged role in 2G scam. The scam pertains to irregularities in the allocation of second generation (2G) spectrum to telecom firms.

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