2G case trial to resume tomorrow

New Delhi: After a week`s break, the trial in the 2G spectrum allocation scam case, involving former Telecom Minister A Raja, DMK MP Kanimozhi and corporate honchos as accused, will resume tomorrow in a Delhi court. The day-to-day trial in the special court had to be adjourned for a week due to winter break and would continue from tomorrow with Raja questioning his former aide Aseervatham Achary, a key witness in the case.

Achary, who is testifying as seventh prosecution witness, has so far stood by his earlier statements made to the CBI indicting Raja and others. During his cross-examination, Achary, a former Additional Private Secretary of Raja, had created a flutter in the court on December 22 by saying that he was facing threat to his life.

He had told Special Judge O P Saini that a man present in the courtroom was threatening him. The person, identified as Jai Prakash who was working as a peon with Reliance Power in Noida, was detained by the police but released later on after a day-long interrogation.

Raja, however, had told the court that it was a "drama" by Achary and it was "planned" in "collusion" with the CBI to "adversely impact" co-accused R K Chandolia`s bail plea, which is slated for hearing in the Supreme Court this month.

In his deposition in the court, Achary had said that Raja was in touch with Swan Telecom promoters Shahid Usman Balwa and Vinod Goenka and Unitech MD Sanjay Chandra and had cleared their projects during his stint with Ministry of Environment and Forests in 2004-07.

On the issue of DMK-run Kalaignar TV, to which DB Realty had allegedly paid Rs 200 crore bribe, Achary had said that Kanimozhi and its MD Sharad Kumar, both accused in the case, were pursuing the matter regarding clearance, required to launch a channel, from Information and Broadcasting Ministry.

The trial in the 2G case involves 17 accused, including three companies – Reliance Telecom Ltd, Swan Telecom and Unitech Ltd. Besides Raja, his former private secretary R K Chandolia, former Telecom Secretary Siddharth Behura, Kanimozhi and Kalaignar TV`s MD Sharad Kumar are facing trial.

The court had also framed charges against six corporate honchos – Reliance ADAG Group Managing Director Gautam Doshi, its senior Vice President Hari Nair, Group President Surendra Pipara, Shahid Usman Balwa, Vinod Goenka and Sanjay Chandra.

The others facing trial are Bollywood producer Karim Morani, directors of Kusegaon Fruits and Vegetables Ltd Asif Balwa and Rajiv Aggarwal. All the 17 have been charged under various provisions of the IPC for criminal breach of trust, conspiracy, cheating, forgery and the Prevention of Corruption Act. Barring Raja and Behura, all are out on bail.