BJP wants Raja out to ensure `fair` probe in 2G spectrum case

BJP demanded Telecom Min A Raja to step down or PM remove him from cabinet to ensure a fair probe into irregularities in 2G spectrum licence distribution.

Last Updated: Sep 27, 2010, 22:12 PM IST

New Delhi: BJP on Monday demanded that Telecom Minister A Raja step down or Prime Minister remove him from cabinet to ensure a fair probe into alleged irregularities in
2G spectrum licence distribution in view of CBI`s submission to Supreme Court that the case required "deep investigation".

"From what we have heard, CBI has said the entire matter is of a complex nature and needs deep investigation. If CBI deems it fit to say so then it is obviously a very
serious matter" BJP spokesperson Nirmala Sitharaman said.
"A fair investigation will be enabled justifiably only when A Raja is not occupying the minister`s chair," she said. Recalling the recent statement of Comptroller and Auditor
General on 2G licence allocation, the BJP leader said the case was "an absolute blatant violation of CAG guidelines.

"We demand that the minister should immediately resign, and if not then the Prime Minister should remove him for the alleged illegal things he has done," Sitharaman said. She insisted that with Raja staying on as Telecom Minister, it was impossible to expect fair investigations.

She alleged that anomalies in 2G spectrum allocation in 2008 had caused a loss of Rs 70,000 crore to the government exchequer. The party also targeted the newly appointed Chief Vigilance Commissioner (CVC) P J Thomas, saying "now even the CVC is not reliable and no appeal to him in the 2G case would be of any help as his record is not clean.
"The CVC was appointed much against the wishes of Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj who said choose any of the other two members in the panel," the BJP spokesperson said.

"An RTI query has revealed he (Thomas) is out on bail in the Palmolein case" in Kerala which relates to irregularities in the award of contract to a Malaysian company for the import of edible oil, she said.

The BJP leader said CAG had pointed out that 75 companies were chosen on first-come-first-serve basis in the 2G spectrum license distribution and most of them were into
construction and not Telecom business.

PTI