‘Raja has been duped by the big people’
Janata Party president Dr. Subramanian Swamy has kept his promise that he made to the viewers of Kahiye Janab last time. Swamy’s continuing fight against corruption has yielded results and former telecom minister A Raja is behind bars. In an exclusive interview with zeenews.com’s Swati Chaturvedi on her show Kahiye Janab, Swamy shares his views on the 2G scam, black money and his constant fight against corruption.
Swati: You and Prashant Bhushan have done something which even the government and the CBI could not do. What next?
Swamy: First Raja will be presented before the court. Then my criminal complaint in the Tis Hazari court and CBI’s FIR will be merged. Both will be heard simultaneously in the court.
Swati: So many high-profile arrests have been made in connection with corruption. What will happen after such arrests? The country would like to know if such people will face the music, particularly those involved in the 2G scam?
Swamy: People were afraid that Karunanidhi will topple the Central government. Speculations were also rife that Raja will never be arrested. But now Raja has been sent to judicial custody. I hope that the CBI under Section 173 of the CrPC will present a report, charges would be framed and trial would begin. I also hope that under Section 319 of the CrPC, more names might be added on the basis of investigation, documents obtained so far and Raja’s confessions. All the ‘maharajas’ and ‘maharanis’ would be dragged into the fold.
Swati: Union Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal recently attacked the CAG which is an institutional body. What message do such attacks send across?
Swamy: I think the people by now know that the Supreme Court has reprimanded Sibal for his irresponsible comments on the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG). This is also for the first time that an affidavit has been sought by the Prime Minister of this nation. A former Cabinet minister and ex-telecom secretary have been sent to judicial custody. Trial will also follow. So whoever is involved or has a share in the scam would definitely be exposed.
Swati: You have often been called as the maverick, a deal maker and a blackmailer. What will you say now that Raja is behind the bars?
Swamy: Had I been a maverick or blackmailer, as I have been called by many, I would not have revealed the names or fought against corruption. Blackmailers don’t do that. They just want a share in the profit. I have filed my petition in the court and the case has started. I promise that I will contribute my level best for fair conduct of the trial.
Swati: Will you be able to make Raja blurt out the truth if you ever get a chance to meet him?
Swamy: I will only tell him that he has been duped by the big people. They have made a fool out of him. He will be behind the bars for 25 years while they will easily get away. So I will only tell him to name those who have been involved and serve the nation by telling the truth.
Swati: So much of black money has been stashed abroad. What is your view on that? What will you do for that?
Swamy: If the government wishes, it can easily obtain the money that has been stashed in the foreign banks. The government should bring in an ordinance and all the government has to do is to tell Switzerland that the money deposited in Swiss banks is untaxed. America too has obtained the names of five thousand deposit account holders from the United Bank of Switzerland. If a deposit holder proves that he has not evaded tax, his money in the Swiss bank account can be returned.
Swati: Why are we not naming the people involved in the black money?
Swamy: Our Prime Minister is not even ready to reveal the names of those 16 account holders which have been disclosed by a Liechtenstein bank. We must disclose the names. The Supreme Court is also mounting pressure to take action to bring back the black money stashed by Indians abroad. Till date we don’t have a clue about billions of dollars of illicit wealth that Hasan Ali has stashed in Swiss and other foreign banks.
Swati: SC is monitoring the black money trail. What will be your role in it?
Swamy: See, senior counsel Anil Diwan is looking after this. So, I have nothing major to do in this regard. All I am saying is that Yashwant Sinha and P Chidambaram have found out a way to tackle this. The participatory note has it all. This participatory note can be used in the stock market which can check illegal money transfer. The Tarapore Committee is also looking into the Indian rupee convertibility on the current account. Lawmakers would surely look to shield the economy from hasty outflows of the FIIs in times of crisis that can weaken the economy.
Swati: I am sure all those involved in scams would like to know your next move?
Swamy: I will never spare those involved in scams. It will be a protracted battle and we must try to convict Raja. No one can buy me. I shall continue to chase these people. For now, I would concentrate on Raja and hope that things will be clear by August-September. Apart from CBI, CAG, CVC, the one-man panel headed by Shivraj Patil have all contributed to this investigation.
Swati: People are saying that you are on Jayalalithaa’s side. What is your take on this? Are you with her?
Swamy: I am not siding with Jayalalithaa. She is an old acquaintance. So far, it is not clear that Jayalalithaa will be able to lead the fight against corruption. I will only stand by my conviction to fight corruption. And if I side with Jayalalithaa even to fight corruption, people would say that it’s my new move. I will only appeal to the masses to give me just five MLAs. So far I have fought alone. But if I have just five MLAs with me, I can give the corrupt people a very tough time.
Adapted by: Reema Sharma