The four-day extended Central Bureau of Investigation custody of former telecom minister Andimuthu Raja ends today along with the custody of DB Realty managing director and promoter of Swan Telecom Ltd Shahid Balwa. Reports suggest that the CBI is likely to seek an extension of their custody.
Raja, who is accused of selling spectrum at throwaway prices to ineligible companies in 2008 when they applied for mobile network licenses, was produced in court for the first time in Mumbai last Tuesday. The court had mildly rebuked the CBI for seeking only short remands, thus hampering their own investigations.
The CBI confronted both Raja and Balwa with documents relating to the 2G spectrum scam. The two were made to face each other and answer questions relating to the grant of licence and undue favours extended to Swan during 2008.
The agency is also focusing on tracing the money trail that allegedly led from Swan Telecom to close relatives and acquaintances of Raja.
Swan Telecom was allegedly one of the two major beneficiaries of Raja's spectrum largesse. Swan was granted a license for a little over Rs1,500 crore and subsequently sold a 45 per cent stake to Etisalat, a Dubai-based firm, for nearly Rs4,200 crore.
The CBI had asked for an extension of Raja's custody last week on the grounds that he was not co-operating.