R K Chandolia, former private secretary of A Raja, today alleged before a Delhi court that the CBI pressurised its witnesses to depose against him in the 2G spectrum case after his arrest.
RK Chandolia, former private secretary of A Raja, today alleged before a Delhi court that the CBI pressurised its witnesses to depose against him in the 2G spectrum case after his arrest.
"My arrest on February 2, this year was illegal because at that point of time, no prosecution witnesses had deposed against me and CBI, in a bid to frame me, pressurised them to name me as accused," Chandolia's counsel Vijay Agarwal told Special CBI Judge O P Saini.
Agarwal, who concluded his two-day-long arguments on framing of charges, claimed innocence saying all the persons, who have either been left out or being made witnesses, should have been before the court as accused.
Department of Telecom (DoT) official, R P Agarwal, who recorded his statements on various dates with CBI, did not name Chandolia and suddenly, he named the private secretary in his testimony, recorded after the arrest and this reflected the motive of the agency to implicate him, the counsel said.
"In January and February, the statements (of Agarwal) were recorded and no role was attributed to Chandolia. When his statement was recorded in March, the name of Chandolia surfaced....I am the smallest pie and why they arrested in February when all the incriminating statements were recorded in March."
"CBI first prepared the draft charge sheet and aligned it later after manipulating the statements of witnesses to suit its case," Agarwal said.
Earlier, Chandolia followed the line of defence of the former Telecom Minister and continued with the blame game by seeking to implicate Tata and corporate lobbyist Niira Radia and others as accused on the ground that it was they who had felicitated the deal to bring DMK-run Kalaignar TV on Tata Sky bouquet.
The defence counsel said the allegation of Chandolia favouring Shahid Usman Balwa-promoted Swan Telecom was unfounded as the company was incapable of getting license.
"Because of the row, involving Idea-Spice merger (two telecom companies), Idea Cellular could not have claimed the license for Delhi circle and hence, the allegation is without any basis," Agarwal said.
He attempted to trash the CBI's plea that Chandolia entered into a conspiracy with Raja and others to accord license to ineligible firm Swan Telecom for lucrative Delhi circle.
"What is so magical about the Delhi circle? The whole charge sheet says that Chandolia favoured Swan Telecom for Delhi circle but the fact is Delhi was placed fifth in terms of revenue generation. The whole case is based on falsehood," he said.
CBI, in its charge sheet, pegged the loss to the exchequer to the tune of Rs 30,000 crore and later, enhances it by Rs 984 crore without any credible document, he said.
The main allegation against Chandolia was that he leaked the information, regarding pre-requisites for getting the letter of intents (LoIs) ahead of eligible telecom majors, is not even worth considering, he said.
"Not only Swan Telecom and Unitech Wireless (alleged beneficiaries) were ready with the demand drafts of Rs 1659 crore but even unsuccessful firms such as Tata Teleservices, Idea and Loop Telecom were also ready with drafts then, please tell me, what secret I leaked?," Agarwal said.