2G case: Anil Ambani resiles from statement

Anil Ambani deposed as a CBI witness in the 2G case before a Delhi court after it dismissed Reliance Telecom Ltd's plea for postponement of his testimony.

New Delhi: Industrialist Anil Ambani Thursday deposed in the 2G spectrum scam in a special court here resiling from a statement made during the probe and "did not support" CBI's case, virtually turning a hostile prosecution witness.

Special Public Prosecutor U U Lalit told Special CBI Judge O P Saini that Ambani has "resiled" when the industrialist said he had not handed over any note to the CBI during the probe in February, 2011.

Notwithstanding Ambani's deposition, the agency decided not to drop his wife Tina Ambani as prosecution witness saying he "has not supported the prosecution case" requiring her to stand in the witness box.

The dramatic turn of events forced the prosecutor to plead with the court for allowing its own witness to be cross examined.

Lalit submitted that Ambani was "resiling" from his previous statement and pleaded that he may be allowed to cross-examine him.

"Heard and allowed," the judge said, allowing CBI's plea. Ambani's company Reliance Telecom Ltd and three of his group executives are accused in the case.

At the conclusion of Ambani's testimony, some of the counsel appearing for the accused, reminded Lalit that he had earlier said Tina Ambani may be dropped as witness.

"It is true that I had said if Anil Ambani gives all the answers, I will not examine her (Tina). But, the witness (Anil) has not supported the prosecution case, I need to examine her," he shot back.

When the court asked Ambani if he was under any "threat, pressure or coercion today from any quarter", he said "I am not under any threat, pressure or coercion."

"Yes sir, I am making my statement voluntarily and as per my own free will," Ambani told the judge when he was asked, whether he was now making his statement voluntarily and as per his own free will.

He replied in the affirmative to a query from the judge that he knew the consequences of giving a false statement and that he could be prosecuted and punished under the law.