No case against Mittal, Tata, says outgoing CBI chief
01 December 2012
A P Singh, who stepped down as director of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Friday, said he had found no evidence of any criminal conspiracy directly linking Bharti Group chairman Sunil Mittal or Tata Group chairman Ratan Tata to the so-called excess spectrum scam, which refers to the allegedly irregular award of airwaves to cellular operators under the NDA regime in 2002.
However, he had recommended filing of charges against former telecom secretary Shyamal Ghosh and three companies - Sterling Cellular, Hutchison Max (both now part of Vodafone), and Bharti Airtel, The Economic Times quoted Singh as saying on his last day in office.
On Thursday, a Supreme Court bench had asked the CBI to go by the opinion of its director. "I cannot change anything (in the opinion). It has already been submitted a month back," Singh said.
Speaking on the political pressure that is said to be ever present in high-profile cases, Singh asserted that such pressure need not be from the government alone. "There was pressure from opposition too like in some of the cases we were pursuing in Gujarat," he said.
Singh appeared to be referring to a string of cases stemming from a false encounter that has resulted in the prosecution of a number of police officers as well as Amit Shah, the former Gujarat home minister. Leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party have claimed that the case against Shah had been fabricated by the CBI.
Singh said only those who the agency believed was directly involved in any criminal conspiracy were interrogated in the course of its investigation into the 2G scam.
"There was no case directly involving Ratan Tata, the chairman of the Tata Group, in any way," Singh said.
Singh was referring to the decision not to question Tata in an investigation of a transaction between a Tata Group company and Unitech, whose promoter is an accused in the alleged 2G scam.