In a move that is bound to bring cheer to the UPA government, the CBI has sent across a note to the Union law ministry alleging that the late Pramod Mahajan, the telecom minister in the NDA government, allotted spectrum in ‘undue haste with a malafide intention’.
In a document accessed by DNA, the note clearly alleges that Mahajan and some senior officials in the telecom ministry caused loss to the exchequer to the tune of Rs508.22 crore by favouring private companies like Bharti Cellular and Hutchison Max (now known as Vodaphone).
Though the CBI has not named Mahajan as an accused on the grounds that then minister “is no more”, his ‘name might be mentioned’ as ‘an accused person not chargesheeted.’
“Mahajan’s ‘patent and undue haste pursuant to the criminal conspiracy hatched’ by the public servants Shyamal Ghosh (the then telecom secretary) and the accused telecom companies, Bharati Cellular Ltd,” was done keeping in view of the IPO of Bharti Tele-Ventures Ltd” during this period,” the note said.
The CBI believes that Mahajan took the decision to allocate additional spectrum on January, 31, 2002 “keeping in view of the urgency of the on-going IPO of Bharati Tele-Ventures Ltd which was opened on January, 28, 2002 and closed on February, 2, 2002, in order to favour” the company.