BJP asks for inquiry into spectrum distribution

November 11th, 2008 - 8:09 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Nov 11 (IANS) The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Tuesday demanded an inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into, what it called, a “telecom scam” in the union Telecom Ministry headed by A. Raja. “This is a major scam. We want an inquiry by the CBI into the whole distribution procedure of the spectrum,” party spokesperson Prakash Javadekar told reporters.

Javadekar alleged that Telecom Minister Raja cancelled the auctions and sold spectrum at lower than market rates.

“Bidding is the only way to do it. We want to know why the process was not transparent this time,” Javadekar said.

He pointed out that Raja had also asked for an inquiry but that was before the distribution of spectrum, which is nothing more than “the tussle between former Telecom Minister Dayanidhi Maran and himself”.

Javadekar did not reply to questions about the involvement of the BJP’s Telecom Minister Jagmohan during the Vajpayee government in a similar case.

Jagmohan had taken a tough stand on realising licence fee from major cellular operators who had quoted abnormally high amounts while bidding and then found it difficult to pay. Jagmohan was dropped as the Telecom Minister after he cancelled the bidding.

Instead, Javadekar spoke on Raja and said: “He has been doing all this on the instructions of the prime minister and the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).

“If what he said is true, we want the government to make all these letters public. We must know the truth,” Javadekar said.

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