CBI yesterday told a special 2G court that ex-Telecom Secretary Shyamal Ghosh, who was chargesheeted in the 2002 additional spectrum allocation case, had given the radio waves to telecom companies at “throwaway prices” causing a huge loss to the exchequer. Also Read - CBI registers disproportionate assets case against former Telecom Minister A Raja
Commencing arguments on framing of charges, Special Public Prosecutor (SPP) Anand Grover argued that Ghosh entered into a conspiracy along with then Telecom Minister Pramod Mahajan, unknown persons of the ministry and telecom firms. Grover contended before Special CBI Judge O P Saini that telecom companies — Hutchison Max (P) Ltd, M/s Sterling Cellular Ltd and Bharti Cellular Ltd — who are also accused in the case, were involved in the conspiracy in getting the additional spectrum. “This spectrum was reserved for defence forces. Shyamal Ghosh gave it at throwaway prices and caused huge loss to the exchequer. He acted against the principles of policy,” the prosecutor argued. Also Read - Special court to hear additional spectrum case on June 4
Arguing that an offence under the Prevention of Corruption Act was made out against Ghosh, the prosecutor alleged that the allocation of additional spectrum was “gratification” here and after he retired in May 2002, he was rewarded with a lucrative post for three years which was “specially created for him”. “After he (Ghosh) had retired, a special post was created for him for three years. It was done very quickly and signed by the authorities. In ordinary course, it is not done. It is illegal on the face of it. “But he gets it as a reward in return of what he has done in the conspiracy with Telecom Minister and other accused,” he alleged. Also Read - CBI gets a specialized lab to decode data from Apple devices
Ghosh was the Telecom Secretary between February 7, 2000 and May 31, 2002. Post-retirement, Ghosh became administrator, Universal Service Obligation Fund under DoT till May 2005. Regarding the cellular operators, Grover claimed they had “engineered” the conspiracy with Ghosh. During the day, the court also began hearing the arguments of Ghosh’s counsel who said there was no malafide intention on his behalf and nothing illegal was done by him.