The BJP today said that the trial court verdict acquitting the accused in the 2G spectrum case was no "clean chit" to the Congress and cited the 2012 Supreme Court order that cancelled the spectrum allocation to assert that corruption had been proved.
Attacking the then Manmohan Singh government, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said it had given licences in 2007-08 on the basis of a price linked to 2001 and there was a "huge element of arbitrariness" in the implementation of the policy.
His colleague Prakash Javadekar alleged that the "choregraphed" charge sheet by the previous UPA government resulted in acquittal of the accused.
The trial court in its verdict has dubbed the chargesheet as "choreographed" and Javadekar told reporters that the CBI had failed it in 2011 when the UPA was in power.
"The Congress choreographed it," he said. To make his point, he cited a case in which the then law minister Ashwani Kumar had to resign after he was accused of interfering with a CBI report in coal block allocation probe.
Javadekar likened the case to a murder case, saying somebody has been killed but guilty has to be found. In a similar way, corruption had happened and the trial court verdict deal with the guilt of the accused.
Citing the Supreme Court verdict in 2012 quashing all allocations, Jaitley said that the UPA's policy was corrupt and dishonest, and intended to promote corruption was upheld by the apex court.
Each allocation was quashed as arbitrary and unfair, he said, adding that the criminal case was launched on the Supreme Court's order, he said.
Jaitley also rejected former telecom minister Kapil Sibal's "zero loss" claim in the allocation, saying it was disproved by the subsequent allocation by the BJP-led NDA government fetching Rs 1.10 lakh crore in 2015 and Rs 66,000 crore in 2016.
Sibal fired a fresh salvo at the BJP following the trial court order today, saying his stand has been vindicated.
The UPA government had fixed a price of Rs 1,734 crore per licensee, the finance minister said.
Cut-off dates were advanced and the first come first served policy was intended to serve a select few, he said, adding that it was later changed to "first come first pay" and a select few were informed in advance.
It was proved by the fact that they had got bank drafts prepared on back dates, he said.
Javadekar referred to the money received by the NDA government for allocation of the 2G spectrum and said it was almost equal to Rs 1.76 lakh crore, which former CAG Vinod Rai had said was the loss to the exchequer caused by the UPA policy.
Taking a dig at the Congress, he said it had become so desperate that it was seeing a win in its loss in assembly polls and now finding vindication in the 2G case verdict.
"It is no clean chit to the Congress," he said.
The Congress was keeping mum on coal block allocation cases in which many accused had been convicted, he said.
Had the UPA policy been clean, then the court would have revived the cancelled licences, he said.
(This article has not been edited by Zeebiz editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
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