A Delhi court today fixed April 29 for hearing the matter in additional 2G spectrum allocation case in which Bharti Cellular CMD Sunil Mittal, Essar Group promoter Ravi Ruia and others have been summoned as accused.
A Delhi court today fixed April 29 for hearing the matter in additional 2G spectrum allocation case in which Bharti Cellular CMD Sunil Mittal, Essar Group promoter Ravi Ruia and others have been summoned as accused. Mittal, Ruia and former Telecom Secretary Shyamal Ghosh appeared before Special CBI Judge O P Saini and the court adjourned the matter in pursuance of the order passed by the Supreme Court on April 18.
The apex court on April 18 had postponed the matter pending before the trial court till April 29 after Justice A R Dave had recused himself from hearing the case. Earlier, apex court judge Justice Vikramajit Sen, who was part of a three judge bench headed by Chief Justice Altamas Kabir, had also recused from hearing the petitions filed by Mittal and Ruia challenging the order of the trial court summoning them as accused in the case.
The Special CBI Judge today marked the presence of Mittal, Ruia and Shyamal Ghosh and posted the matter for April 29, saying "in view of order dated April 18 of the Supreme Court, the matter is adjourned for April 29". The court extended the personal bonds, furnished by Mittal and Ruia on April 16, till the next date of hearing.
One of the accused, Canada-based NRI Asim Ghosh, who was the then Managing Director of accused firm Hutchison Max Telecom Pvt Ltd, is yet to be served with the summons issued against him in the case. The special court had on March 19 summoned Mittal, Ruia, who was then a Director in one of the accused companies Sterling Cellular Ltd and Asim Ghosh. Their names were not mentioned in the charge sheet filed by CBI on December 21, last year, in the case.
Besides the three, the court had also summoned as accused Shyamal Ghosh and three telecom firms Bharti Cellular Ltd, Hutchison Max Telecom Pvt Ltd (now known as Vodafone India Ltd) and Sterling Cellular Ltd (now known as Vodafone Mobile Service Ltd). CBI, in its charge sheet, had named the three telecom companies as accused in the case relating to the Department of Telecommunications allocating additional spectrum which had allegedly resulted in a loss of Rs 846 crore to the exchequer.
When CBI had opposed the plea of Mittal in the Supreme Court, saying evidence has been found against him during investigation in the case, the apex court had questioned the probe agency as to why he was not named in the charge sheet. CBI had filed the charge sheet on December 21 last year against Shyamal Ghosh and three telecom firms – Bharti Cellular Ltd, Hutchison Max Telecom Pvt Ltd and Sterling Cellular Ltd.
Though Mittal, Ruia and Asim Ghosh were not mentioned in CBI's charge sheet as accused, the special court in its order had said it was taking cognisance of the case and issuing summons to all the seven accused, including them, for April 11. The special court had said that Mittal, Ruia and Asim Ghosh were "prima facie" in "control of affairs" of their respective companies which were charge sheeted by CBI for offences of criminal conspiracy (Sec 120-B) under the IPC and under provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.