Relief for ex-telecom secretary in additional spectrum case

New Delhi: A special court here on Thursday dropped charges against ex- telecom secretary Shyamal Ghosh and three companies in the 2002 additional spectrum allocation case.

Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Special Judge O.P. Saini discharged Ghosh and three telecom firms – Bharti Cellular Ltd, Hutchison Max Telecom Pvt Ltd (Vodafone India Ltd) and Sterling Cellular Ltd (Vodafone Mobile Service Ltd).

The case relates to the department of telecommunications allocating additional spectrum in a decision taken on January 31, 2002, when the National Democratic Alliance was in power, allegedly resulting in a loss of Rs.846 crore to the exchequer.

“I find that there is no incriminating material on record against the accused and the accused deserve to be discharged,” Special Judge Saini said in a 235-page order.

The court observed that the chargesheet filed by the CBI on December 21, 2012 was full of “distorted and fabricated” facts and said, “an attempt has been made to mislead the court”.

The court also directed the CBI director to conduct inquiry against the erring officials and take action as per law.

The court dropped charges dealing with criminal conspiracy and various provisions of Prevention of Corruption Act against Ghosh and the three companies.