The Delhi High Court on Friday (April 20) issued notice to seek response of all Essar Group promoters on the CBI’s plea challenging their acquittal in a case arising out of 2G scam case probe.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had moved the Delhi High Court challenging the Special Court judgment acquitting the Ruia brothers and the proprietors of the Loop telecom and Loop Mobiles in connection with the 2G Spectrum allocation scam. In their plea filed through Special Public Prosecutor Sanjeev Bhandari, the CBI had stated that the trial court had failed to appreciate the evidence on record.
The CBI alleged that observations made by the Special Judge while acquitting all accused were “highly unwarranted” unjustified and in any case deserve to be expunged.
This is the second appeal filed by CBI against Ravi Kant Ruia, Anshuman Ruia (both Essar Group Promoters), IP Khaitan, Kiran Khaitan (both Loop Telecom Promoters) & others against their acquittal in the 2G spectrum case with regard to allocation of additional spectrum.
The case is that on 21.10.2009, the CBI registered an FIR vide RC DAI 2009 A 0045 against unknown officials of Department of Telecommunications (DoT), Govt. of India, unknown private persons/ companies and others for the offence punishable under Section 120 B IPC read with Section 13(2) r/w 13(1)(d) of Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 (PC Act), on allegations of criminal conspiracy and criminal misconduct, in respect of allotment of Letters of Intent CBI Vs. Ravi Kant Ruia and others Page 2 of 526 (LOI), Unified Access Services (UAS) Licenses and spectrum by the DoT.
Investigation of the case was taken up and charge sheet dated 02.04.2011 and First supplementary charge¬sheet dated 25.04.2011 were filed before this Court.
During the period such investigation was in progress an SLP (Civil) Appeal no. 24873/2010 was filed by CPIL & Others before Hon’ble Supreme Court of India, in which Hon’ble Supreme Court of India granted leave vide an order dated 16.12.2010 and decided to monitor the investigation of this case. Vide the aforesaid order dated 16.12.2010,
The Supreme Court of India also directed that: “The CBI shall conduct thorough investigation into various issues highlighted in the report of the Central Vigilance Commission, which was forwarded to the Director, CBI vide letter dated 12.10.2009 and the report of the CAG, who have prima facie found serious irregularities in the grant of licenses to 122 applicants, majority of whom are said to be ineligible, the blatant violation of the terms and conditions of licenses and huge loss to the public exchequer running into several thousand crore. The CBI should also probe how licenses were granted to large number of ineligible applicants and who was responsible for the same and why the TRAI and the DoT did not take action against those licensees who sold their stakes/equities for many thousand crore and also against those who failed to fulfill roll-out obligations and comply with other conditions of license.”
Investigation has been carried out on the allegations that M/s Loop Telecom Ltd., and associated persons including Essar group persons / companies, cheated the DoT, Government of India by concealing the actual stake holders of M/s Loop Telecom Ltd. behind a corporate veil, while applying for and getting 21 new UAS Licenses and got the 21 UAS Licenses and CBI Vs. Ravi Kant Ruia and others valuable spectrum for this company.
Special Judge OP Saini had acquitted Ravikant Ruia, Anshuman Ruia, Ishwari Prasad Khaitan, Vikash Saraf, Essar Teleholdings Limited, Loop Telecom and Loop Mobile India Limited on December 21, 2017.
-India Legal Bureau