I am innocent in 2G scam, says Morani

August 19th, 2011 - 9:18 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 19 (IANS) Seeking his discharge in the 2G spectrum allocation scam, Cineyug Films’ founder Karim Morani Friday told a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) special court here that he was “innocent”.

“I (Morani) am a innocent man. I cannot be a part of the conspiracy. Being a friend to someone is not enough to prosecute anyone,” senior advocate Siddhartha Luthra, appearing for Morani, argued before special judge O.P. Saini.

“Just being a shareholder in the company, my client (Morani) can not be prosecuted. The umbrella of chargesheet filed in the case is not enough to held my client guilty,” he added.

Luthra further said that the investigative agency has failed to establish that the alleged trail of Rs.200 crore to DMK-run Kalaignar TV through Morani’s firm Cineyug was a bribe in lieu of grant of 2G licence.

Neither is Morani a habitual offender nor has he any connection with telecom business, the counsel argued, adding the presumption cannot form a basis for his (Morani) prosecution.

“It cannot be the case that Rs.200 crore was paid as quid pro quo for the grant of UAS (2G) licences. If the money was paid as bribe than it would not have been paid back. There is no nexus between the transactions and the alleged favour done for award of licences,” he said.

Morani is accused of intentionally aiding and facilitating the transfer of Rs.200 crore from Shahid Usman Balwa-promoted DB Group, an alleged beneficiary of the scam, as bribe to Kalaignar TV.

The first set of charges filed in the case April 2 had named former communications minister A. Raja, eight others and the three telecom companies as co-conspirators.

The supplementary chargesheet April 25 named DMK MP Kanimozhi, daughter of former Tamil Nadu chief minister M. Karunanidhi, her close aide and Kalaignar TV managing director Sharad Kumar, Morani and two others.

All the five are accused in the case for allegedly receiving the bribe which was returned after the CBI started quizzing Raja in the case and have been charged under various provisions of the Indian Penal Code and the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, including cheating, forgery and criminal conspiracy.

Meanwhile, Morani complained he was in bad health but the jail authorities were not arranging any treatment so he sought a court direction directing the authorities concerned to take him for medical checkup.

Judge Saini directed jail authorities to take him (Morani) for medical checkup at regular intervals of time.

On Saturday, Sharad Kumar will begin his arguments on framing of charges against him.

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