Ex-telecom minister A Raja filed his defense on the trial court verdict acquitting him in the 2G spectrum case.
Opposing the probe agencies permission to get the appeals admitted, Sharma pointed out the CBI attached only the FIR and charge-sheet in its appeal challenging a judicial finding, instead of citing specific material evidence from the trial to show evidence in its favour.
“This is either half-hearted approach or one of over-confidence bordering on arrogance,” Raja told Justice Brijesh Sethi through his Advocate. He also added that they have not even annexed the basic documents required in the plea.
Sharma also maintained that Aseervadam Achary, a star witness of CBI, who was actually obstructing the minister, because of his own political ambitions. To stress his argument, Raja’s lawyer also cited a testimony recorded by original IO of the CBI before the trial court.
Apart from A Raja, other acquitted persons, ex telecom secretary and businessman Rajiv Agarwal have also targeted the agency for filing incomplete appeal. They have argued that in the absence of such documents, any prior approval granted by the central government would be without application of mind.
Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain appearing for CBI said that the trial court verdict of acquitting all accused was challenged as an opinion was received that “it is a fit case to prefer an appeal.” The agency also said that the opinion was received from the Ministry of Law and Justice which examined the proposal of the agency to file a criminal appeal. HC is conducting hearing on CBI’s ‘leave to appeal’ (a formal permission granted by court to party to challenge a decision in higher court) against the acquittal of all the individuals and firms. After finishing the submissions in the CBI case the high court will also take up the ED’s money laundering case in which also all the accused were acquitted by the special court.
A special court on December 21, 2017 acquitted Raja, DMK MP Kanimozhi and others in the CBI and the ED cases related to the scam. Besides Raja and Kanimozhi, the special court had acquitted Behura; Raja”s erstwhile private secretary R K Chandolia; Unitech Ltd MD Sanjay Chandra and three top executives of Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group (RADAG) — Gautam Doshi, Surendra Pipara and Hari Nair, in the 2G case filed by the CBI. Swan Telecom promoters Shahid Balwa and Vinod Goenka, Asif Balwa and Rajiv Agarwal were also acquitted in the CBI case.