Tuesday, February 28, 2012

TAMIL NADU: Refugee relocation on the fast track

Published in The New Indian Express, Chennai on Feb 28, 2012:
CHENNAI: A relay-hunger fast agitation by five Lankan Tamil inmates of  the Chengalpet Special Detention Camp drew an official response on Monday, the eighth day of protest.
According to sources, a team of 10 officials including the Revenue Divisional Officer and Tahsildar from Kancheepuram district and police officers from the Q-Branch and local police met the five fasting Lankans and promised to release them within 45 days from the special camp to normal camps.
Seeking Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa’s intervention for their immediate relocation to normal camps from Chengalpet Special Detention Camp, five inmates - Ramesh (Jaffna), Sekar (Mannar), Selvaraja (Mullaithivu), Sivakumar (Mannar) and Bismi (Kandy) - have been sitting on a relay-hunger fast since last Monday. Besides Bismi, who came to India for pursuing his higher studies at Tiruchy and was put in the camp for overstaying six months ago, the other four members have been detained at the special camp for more than a year now under different charges, including passport-related and alleged smuggling of detonators to Sri Lanka.
According to information trickling out of the camp, Sivakumar, one of the five inmates who sat on the fast seeking release, had been already acquitted by a local court in Rameswaram on passport-related charges about three months ago and then reportedly detained in the camp under other charges. Sivakumar’s ailing mother lives at Puthupattu Refugee Camp in Villupuram district and often visits her son at special camp.
Speaking to Express over phone from  the Valavanthankottai Refugee Camp in  Tiruchy, Rupa, the sister of Ramesh (one of the detainees) said, “My brother is already 34 and due to the detention at special camp, his marriage has been delayed.”
“We appeal to the Chief Minister to consider all the detainees cases with a kind heart and provide a solution to their families,” Rupa added.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

CHENNAI Corporation plans street-side eateries

CHENNAI: In a first-of-its-kind move, the Chennai Corporation has planned to open 1000 street-side hygienic eateries in its limits to sell idli, meals, curd and sambhar rice at nominal prices. 
On a trial basis, we would open about 200 such outlets in the first phase; depending on the response, more such eateries will be opened, Mayor Saidai Duraisamy told councillors during the Council meet on Wednesday.
“The objective of these fast food centres is to provide quality food for Chennaiites and these food stalls will be named after Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa,” Duraisamy said amidst thundering applause from the ruling AIADMK councillors.
The street-side food outlets will be a boon to school and college students from economically weaker sections, daily wage labourers and auto drivers in the city, the Mayor said.
After a lengthy discussion, which only praised the Mayor for introducing the scheme, the Corporation Council adopted the resolution seeking a nod from the State government to start street-side eateries.
According to the plan, a team led by City Corporation health officer would execute and monitor the scheme in coordination with revenue and Corporation zonal officials.
The team would periodically review the quality and quantity of food items (prepared at the civic body’s common kitchen) served in these stalls that would be entirely operated by the Chennai Corporation.

CHENNAI: More strays under ABC after city expansion

By G Saravanan
Published in The New Indian Express, Chennai on Feb 23, 2012:
CHENNAI: The expansion of Chennai Corporation’s boundary from 174 sq km to 426 sq km might have brought cheer to lakhs of residents living in suburban areas, but not to the Veterinary Department of the Chennai Corporation, which now has a huge task at hand.
 After the merger of 42 adjacent local bodies with the Chennai Corporation,  the department now has almost double the number of  stray dogs  to be covered under the civic body’s Animal Birth Control-Anti-Rabies (ABC-AR) vaccination programme.
“We used to immunise about 1,000 stray dogs on an average every month for the past five to six years, but it has nearly doubled after the expansion of Chennai Corporation limits last October,” Dayalan, Veterinary Officer in Chennai Corporation, told City Express.
While the figure was about 1,600 in December last, in January, it rose to 1,950 stray dogs, as the area that was added to the existing Chennai Corporation limits is vast,” he added.
Under the immunisation programme, stray dogs in Chennai city (including from the recently annexed areas) are being caught and immunised under the Animal Birth Control programme with the assistance of non-governmental organisations like the SPCA, Blue Cross of India and People for Animals. The entire programme is being adhered  to as per the Animal Birth Control (Dog) Rules 2001, Dayalan said.
The consistent immunisation programme in effect for over a decade has helped the Chennai Corporation keep the killer rabies at bay.
There has been no case of rabies in the city in the last few years and complaints of the stray dog menace have also come down drastically over the years,” Dr P Kuganantham, Corporation Health Officer told City Express.
However, we have to strictly enforce our Animal Birth Control-Anti-Rabies (ABC-AR) vaccination programme in those suburban areas that were annexed with the Corporation last October, as a few cases of rabies were reported from those areas last year,” Kuganantham added.
There were 120 deaths due to rabies reported in 1996. The number came down to five by mid-2000 and in the last few years, there have been no reports of rabies from the city areas, a Corporation official said.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

தமிழர்களுக்குச் சுண்ணாம்பு, பலுசிஸ்தானியர்களுக்கு வெண்ணெய்-அமெரிக்காவின் கபட நாடகம்!

பலுசிஸ்தான் மாகாண மக்களுக்கு பிரிந்து போய் தனிநாடு அமைத்துக் கொள்ளக் கூடிய “சுயநிர்ணய உரிமை” என்று அமெரிக்க நாடாளுமன்றத்தில் கொண்டுவரப்பட்ட தீர்மானத்தால் அலறிப் போய் கிடக்கிறது பாகிஸ்தான்.
அமெரிக்காவின் இந்த நிலைப்பாடு அதன் இரட்டை வேடத்தையும், கபட நாடகத்தையும் அம்பலப்படுத்துவதாக உள்ளது. ஈழத் தமிழர்களின் தனி நாடு கோரிக்கையை ஏற்காத அமெரிக்கா இப்போது சுயநல நோக்குடன் பலுசிஸ்தான் தனி நாடாகலாமே என்று சப்பை கட்டுவதாக கூறப்படுகிறது.
அமெரிக்க நாடாளுமன்றத்தில் கொண்டுவரப்பட்ட தீர்மானத்துக்காக பாகிஸ்தானுக்கான அமெரிக்க தூதரை இருமுறை அழைத்து அந்நாட்டு வெளியுறவுத்துறை அமைச்சகம் கண்டனம் தெரிவித்துள்ளது.
பாகிஸ்தானின் பஞ்சாப் மாகாண சட்டப்பேரவையில் கண்டனத் தீர்மானம் நிறைவேற்றப்பட்டுள்ளது.

பாகிஸ்தான் நாட்டு அனைத்து ஊடகங்களும் இத்தகைய தீர்மானங்களின் பின்னணியில் இந்தியா இருப்பதாகக் குற்றம்சாட்டி, அப்படியானால் இந்தியாவில் உள்ள ஜம்மு காஷ்மீர் மக்களுக்கும் தனிநாடு அமைக்கும் சுயநிர்ணய உரிமை இல்லையா? என்று கேள்வி எழுப்பியிருக்கின்றன.
பலுசிஸ்தான் விவகாரம் என்ன?
ஈரான், ஆப்கானிஸ்தான், சீனா ஆகிய நாடுகளின் எல்லைகளைக் கொண்டது பாகிஸ்தானின் ஒரு மாகாணமாக இருக்கும் பலுசிஸ்தான்.
பலுசிஸ்தானியர்கள் பழங்குடி இன மக்கள். இவர்களது நலன்களை நீண்டகாலமாகவே பாகிஸ்தான் அரசுகள் புறக்கணித்து வருகின்றன என்பது குற்றச்சாட்டு.
இதனால் தங்களது மாகாணத்தை தனிநாடாக அறிவிக்கக் கோரி ஆயுதப் போராட்டத்தையும் நடத்திக் கொண்டிருக்கின்றனர் பலுசிஸ்தானியர்கள்.
பலுசிஸ்தான் விடுதலைப் போராட்டத்தை ஒடுக்குவதற்காக அனைத்துவித மூர்க்கத்தனமான இனப்படுகொலைகளையும் பாகிஸ்தான் அரங்கேற்றி வருகிறது.
அண்மையில் பாகிஸ்தான் சென்றிருந்த இலங்கை அதிபர் ராஜபக்சேவிடம், தமிழினப் படுகொலை நிகழ்த்தியதுபோல் நாங்கள் பலுசிஸ்தான் இனப் படுகொலை நடத்த வகுப்பு எடுக்குமாறு கேட்டிருந்தது குறிப்பிடத்தக்கது.
பலுசிஸ்தானின் முக்கியத்துவம்
பலுசிஸ்தான் ஒரு தனி மாகாணம் மட்டுமல்ல. அரசியல் முக்கியத்துவம் வாய்ந்த பூகோளப் பிரதேசமும் கூட.
பலுசிஸ்தான் மாகாணத்தின் கவ்தார் துறைமுகம் மிக முக்கியமான ஒன்று. இந்த அரபிக் கடல் துறைமுகம் இப்போது சீனாவின் வசம் உள்ளது.
மத்திய கிழக்கு நாடுகளிலிருந்து கச்சா எண்ணெய்யை இந்த துறைமுகத்தில் இறக்கி வைத்து இங்கிருந்து எல்லை மாகாணங்களுக்கு ரயில் மூலம் கொண்டு செல்வதன் மூலம் ஆதாயம் அடையலாம் என்று கணக்குப் போட்டது சீனா.
ஏனெனில் அரபிக் கடல், இந்தியப் பெருங்கடல், வங்கக் கடல் மட்டுமின்றி மலாக்கா ஜலசந்தியைத் தாண்டி தங்கள் நாட்டுக்கு கொண்டுபோய் அங்கிருந்து மீண்டும் எல்லை மாகாணங்களுக்கு கச்சா எண்ணெய் அனுப்புவதற்கு பெரும் பொருட்செலவை செய்து வந்தது சீனா.
இந்த செலவுக்குப் பேசாமல் பாகிஸ்தானின் கவ்தார் துறைமுகத்தை தூர்வாரி சீரமைத்து விரிவாக்கி ஒரு ரயில் பாதையையும் போட்டுவிட்டாலே பாதி பணம் மிச்சம் என்று கணக்குப் போட்டு வெற்றியும் பெற்றுவிட்டது சீனா.
துறைமுகப் பணிகளை சீனா மேற்கொண்டபோதும் ரயில் பாதை பணிகளின் போதும் பலுசிஸ்தானியர்கள் சும்மா இருக்கவில்லை. இத்தகைய பணிகளில் பலுசிஸ்தானியர்களுக்கு முன்னுரிமை கோரினர். சீனாவும் பாகிஸ்தானும் காதில் போட்டுக் கொள்ளவில்லை.சீன நாட்டவரையே பயன்படுத்திக் கொண்டனர்.
இதனால் அவ்வப்போது சீனப் பொறியாளர்களை பலுசிஸ்தான் ஆயுதக் குழு கடத்திச் செல்வது வாடிக்கையாகிப் போனது.
அமெரிக்காவின் தலையீடு
அரபிக் கடலின் ‘இங்கிட்டு’ கவ்தார் ‘அங்கிட்டு’ சவூதி அரேபியா, அப்பால ஈரான், இப்பால ஆப்கானிஸ்தான்.. சீனா என ஒட்டுமொத்த எதிரிகள் கூடி கும்மியடிக்கும் இடமாக பலுசிஸ்தான் இருக்கிறதே என்ற கவலை அமெரிக்காவுக்கு.
ஈராக்கில் தொடங்கி ஆப்கானிஸ்தான் வரைக்கும் வந்து பாகிஸ்தானில் பின்லேடனை சாய்ச்சு எல்லாம் செஞ்சாச்சு..ஈரான்தான் பாக்கி… இஸ்ரேலைவிட்டு அடிச்சா சேதாரம் ரொம்ப அதிகம்… நாமளே அடிக்கலாம்.. எப்படி அடிக்கலாம்? என்ற யோசனைகளுக்கான விடைதான் அமெரிக்காவின் தற்போதைய தீர்மானம் என்கின்றனர் அரசியல் பார்வையாளர்கள்.
பாகிஸ்தானை துண்டாடிட்டு பலுசிஸ்தானை தனிநாடாக்க அனுமதித்தால் சீனாவுக்கும் நெருக்கடி,பாகிஸ்தானுக்கும் ஆப்பு. பலுசிஸ்தானில் ஊடுருவிவிட்டால் மத்திய கிழக்கு நாட்டிலும் கால்வெச்சமாதிரி, தெற்காசியாவிலும் கால்வெச்ச மாதிரி என்கிறது அமெரிக்க கணக்கு.
இந்தியா நிலை
பலுசிஸ்தானின் சுயநிர்ணய உரிமை விவகாரத்தில் இந்தியா மெளனமாகவே இருந்துவிடுவதற்கான வாய்ப்புகளே அதிகம். இந்தியா என்ற நாடே பல தேசிய இனங்களின் சுயநிர்ணய உரிமைகளை கபளீகரம் செய்தே உருவாக்கப்பட்டுள்ளது என்பதால் மூச்சேவிட வாய்ப்பில்லை.
இருப்பினும் சீனாவுக்கும் பாகிஸ்தானுக்கும் சிக்கல் என்பதால் மெளனமாக சிரித்தாலும் அடிவயிறு கலங்கியேத்தான் கிடக்கும். ஏனெனில் தெற்காசிய பிராந்தியத்தில் 30 ஆண்டுகாலத்துக்கும் மேலாக சுயநிர்ணய உரிமை கோரி போராடிய வெற்றிபெற்ற இயக்கமாக வலம்வந்தது தமிழீழ விடுதலைப் புலிகள் இயக்கம்.
தமிழீழ விடுதலைப் புலிகள் தனிநாடு அமைத்தால் தமிழ்நாட்டுத் தமிழர்களும் இணைந்து அகன்ற தமிழ்நாட்டை தென்னாசியாவில் உருவாக்கிவிடுவார்கள் என்ற அச்சமே முள்ளிவாய்க்காலில் லட்சக்கணக்கில் தமிழர்களை கொன்று புதைக்க கரம் கொடுத்தது.
இந்த அச்சம்தான் இன்றளவும் தமிழ்நாட்டு விவகாரங்களில் மாற்றாந்தாய் மனப்பான்மையுடன் இந்திய அரசு இருக்கிறது என்கின்றனர் தமிழ் ஆர்வலர்கள்.
விடுதலைப் புலிகளும் அமெரிக்காவும்
தற்போது பலுசிஸ்தானின் சுயநிர்ணய உரிமையை ஆதரிக்கும் அமெரிக்கா, இதே உரிமை கோரி ஆயுதம் தரித்த தமிழீழ விடுதலைப் புலிகளை அழிக்க துணை நின்றது என்பது குறிப்பிடத்தக்கது.
பலுசிஸ்தானத்தில் எப்படி ஒரு கவ்தாரோ அதுபோலத்தான் தமிழீழத்தின் தலைநகராக கருதப்படும் திருகோணமலை துறைமுகமும்.
திருகோணமலை துறைமுகத்தை யார் கையில் வைத்திருக்கிறார்களோ அவர்களே தென்னாசியாவையே கையில் வைத்திருப்பவர்கள் என்பது ராஜராஜசோழன் காலத்திலிருந்து தெற்காசிய பிராந்தியம் கண்டுவரும் உண்மை.
திருகோணமலைக்காக 1980களிலேயே அமெரிக்கா முயற்சித்தது. இலங்கையும் இடம் கொடுத்தது. அப்போதைய பிரதமர் இந்திரா காந்தி, இந்தியாவின் அனுமதியின்றி எந்த ஒருநாட்டுக்கும் இலங்கை அனுமதி கொடுக்கக் கூடாது என்று பகிரங்கமாக நாடாளுமன்றத்தில் எச்சரித்தார்.
1990களுக்குப் பிறகு நிலைமை தலைமைகீழ்.
சுயநிர்ணய உரிமை, தனிநாடு கோரிக்கையை கெட்டவார்த்தையாக நினைத்து சொந்த நாட்டு குடிமக்களின் உறவுகள் என்று கூட பார்க்காமல் தமிழர்களை விரோதிகளாகப் பார்த்து சீனாவுக்கு சிங்களவர்களோடு இணைந்து சிவப்புக் கம்பளம் விரித்தது.
இதில் சீனா,பாகிஸ்தான், இலங்கை, இந்தியா அத்தனை எதிரிகளும் ஓரணியில் வரிந்து கட்டி தமிழினத்தையே நிர்மூலமாக்கிவிட்டனர்.
இறுதி யுத்தகாலத்தில் குறிப்பாக 2002-ல் இலங்கை அரசுக்கும் தமிழீழ விடுதலைப் புலிகளுக்குமான நார்வேயின் தலையீட்டில் உருவான அமைதி ஒப்பந்தத்திற்குப் பிறகு புலிகளுடன் திருகோணமலைக்காகவும் ஆப்கானிஸ்தானின் தலிபான்களுக்கு எதிரான போரில் பங்கேற்கவும் அமெரிக்கா பேரம் பேசியது.
தலிபான் விவகாரத்தை முற்றாக நிராகரித்த தமிழீழ விடுதலைப் புலிகளின் தலைவர் பிரபாகரன், தமது மாவீரர் நாள் உரையில் பிராந்திய வல்லரசுகள் மற்றும் மேற்குலக நாடுகள் தமிழீழப் பிரதேசத்தின் மீது அக்க்றை கொள்வதற்கான பின்புலமாக அவர்களது நலன்களும் இருக்கின்றன என்பதை பகிரங்கமாகச் சுட்டிக்காட்டி வந்தார்.
இந்தியாவின் தலையீட்டால் புலிகளை ஒழிக்க அமெரிக்கா இந்தியாவுக்கு கை கொடுத்தது. இதே அமெரிக்காதான் இப்போது தெற்காசிய நாடுகளுக்கு ஒட்டுமொத்தமாக செக் வைப்பது போல ‘சுயநிர்ணய உரிமை” என்ற ஆயுதத்தை முன்வைக்கிறது.
எந்த சுயநிர்ணய உரிமை முழக்கத்தை முடிவுக்குக் கொண்டுவந்துவிட்டோம் என்று இந்தியா நினைத்ததோ அது இப்போது டெல்லிக்கு ரொம்ப பக்கத்திலேயே கேட்கிறது என்பதுதான் முக்கியம்.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Shipping Minister Vasan hints at privatising major ports

Published in The New Indian Express, Chennai on Feb 20, 2012:
CHENNAI: All major ports in the country are aiming at bringing structural changes in the administration to improve organisational effectiveness, Union Shipping Minister G K Vasan said.
Inaugurating the eighth edition of the PIANC international conference on Coastal and Port Engineering in Developing Countries (COPEDEC-2012) here on Sunday, Vasan said, “In addition to capacity augmentation, all the (13 major) ports are planning towards implementing the landlord port concept, limiting their role to maintenance of (approach) channels and basic infrastructure,  leaving development, operation, management of (container) terminal and cargo handling facilities to the private sector.
Besides aiming at progressive use of information technology to cover the entire gamut of operations, Indian ports are gearing up to meet the anticipated demand from the trade in the years to come, Vasan added.
Strongly pitching for an economical and safe designs to improve the standard of ports in the country, Vasan said, “Research and development work in the (port engineering) field assumes significance to find innovative ways and means to develop structures which can meet the challenges of ever-changing size of ships in the global scenario.”
Engineering colleges and research institutes should tune into the present day requirements in the (port engineering) field and encourage students and research scientists to devote more time to these aspects, the minister added.
The eighth international conference is being organised for the first time in India at IIT Madras.About 230 delegates from 35 countries are participating in the five-day international conference.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

அமெரிக்கா மீண்டும் ஒரு முறை தமிழ் மக்களை ஏமாற்றுமா? - தாயகத்தில் இருந்து வீரமணி

"உலக வல்லரசான அமெரிக்கா நினைத்தால் ஈழத்தமிழ் மக்களுக்கு நிலையான நிம்மதியான தீர்வொன்றைப் பெற்றுதர முடியுமென்று இன்றுவரை தமிழ் மக்கள் நம்புகின்றனர்."

ஜெனீவாவில் இம்மாத இறுதியில் இடம்பெறவுள்ள ஐ.நா மனிதவுரிமைகள் சபையின் கூட்டத் தொடரில் அமெரிக்கா சிறீலங்காவிற்கு எதிரான தீர்மானமொன்றை கொண்டுவரவுள்ளதாக வெளியாகியுள்ள செய்திகள் குறித்து ஈழத்தமிழ் மக்கள் சிறியதொரு மகிழ்ச்சியுடன் உள்ளனர்.

இந்தச் செய்திகளின் தொடர்ச்சியாக அமெரிக்க இராஜாங்கத் திணைக்களத்தின் பூகோள குற்றவியல் நீதி விசாரணைக்கான தூதுவர் ஸ்டீபன் ரெப் இலங்கை வந்துள்ளமையும், அவர் தமிழர் பிரதேசங்களுக்கு வந்து மக்களுடன் கலந்துரையாடியுள்ளமையும் மக்களுக்கு இந்த நம்பிக்கையை கொடுத்திருக்கின்றது.

ஆனால், அமெரிக்காவின் இந்த நகர்வு குறித்து தமிழ் மக்கள் அபரிமிதமான நம்பிக்கை கொள்ளவில்லை என்பதை யாழ்.குடாநாட்டு மக்களின் கருத்துக்கள் வாயிலாக அறியக்கூடியதாகவுள்ளது. 2008 ஆம் ஆண்டு தீவிரம் பெற்ற யுத்தம் 2009 ஆம் ஆண்டு இறுதி யுத்தமாக மாறி வன்னியில் தமிழ் மக்கள் கொத்துக்கொத்தாக கொன்றொழிக்கப்பட்டபோது, தமிழர்கள் இந்தியாவையும் அமெரிக்காவையும் நம்பியிருந்தனர். பாரிய கப்பல்கள் சகிதம் அமெரிக்கா கடல்வழியாக வரும் என்றும், அவற்றின் மூலம் பொதுமக்களும் போராளிகளும் மீட்கப்படுவார்கள் என்றும் அப்போது தமிழ் மக்கள் வெகுவாகவே நம்பியிருந்தனர்.

யுத்த வலயத்தில் சிக்குண்டிருந்த மக்கள் மட்டுமன்றி வடக்குக் கிழக்கு உட்பட ஏனைய புலம்பெயர்ந்த நாடுகளில் வசித்த தமிழ் மக்கள் மத்தியிலும் இந்தக் கருத்துக்கள் வேகமாக பரவியிருந்தன. மக்களின் இந்த அதீத நம்பிக்கைக்கு காரணமும் இல்லாமலில்லை. சிறுபான்மை மக்களின் கருத்துக்களுக்கு மதிப்பளிக்க கூடியவரும், சிறுபான்மை மக்களின் உரிமைகளில் கூடிய கவனம் செலுத்துபவருமான பராக் ஒபாமா அப்போது அமெரிக்காவின் ஜனாதிபதியாக பொறுப்பேற்றிருந்தமையே தமிழ் மக்களை இந்த நம்பிக்கைக்குள் ஈர்த்திருந்தது.

ஆனால் உலக நாடுகளில் தடைசெய்யப்பட்ட இரசாயன ஆயுதங்களையும், நாசகார குண்டுகளையும் சிறீலங்கா அரசாங்கம் தமிழ் மக்கள் மீது வீசி அவர்களை கொன்று குவித்துக் கொண்டிருந்தபோது, இதே அமெரிக்கா பார்த்துக் கொண்டிருந்தது. தமிழ் மக்களை கொன்று குவிப்பதற்காக சிறீலங்கா அரசிற்கு அழிவு ஆயுதங்களை வழங்கிய நாடுகளை தண்டிப்பதற்கோ, தட்டிக்கேட்பதற்கோ பதிலாக அந்த நாடுகளுடன் அமெரிக்கா நட்புரிமை பாராட்டிக் கொண்டிருந்தது.

ஒரு இனத்தை எந்த வகையில் அழித்தொழிக்க முடியுமோ, எந்த வகையில் துன்புறுத்த முடியுமோ, அத்தனை கொடூரங்களையும் மேற்கொண்ட சிறீலங்கா அரசை தண்டிக்காவிட்டாலும் தட்டிக்கேட்காமலிருந்த அமெரிக்காவின் செயல் குறித்து, ஈழத்தமிழ் மக்கள் இன்றுவரை கடும் விசனத்துடனும் கவலையுடனும் இருக்கின்றனர்.

யுத்தம் நிறைவடைந்து 3 வருடங்களை எட்டுகின்ற தற்போதைய நிலையில் சிறீலங்காவிற்கு எதிரான யுத்தக்குற்ற தீர்மானமொன்றை கொண்டு வருவதற்கு அமெரிக்கா முயற்சியெடுத்திருப்பது குறித்து தமிழ் மக்கள் மனதில் சிறியதொரு மகிழ்ச்சி நிலவுகின்றபோதிலும் அந்த மகிழ்ச்சிக்குள் சந்தேகப் பார்வையும் தலைதூக்கியுள்ளது.

சிறீலங்காவிற்கு எதிரான தீர்மானமொன்றை கொண்டுவரும் பட்சத்தில் அது இலங்கையில் நல்லிணக்கத்தை ஏற்படுத்த உதவிபுரியுமென்று ஜெனீவாவுக்கான அமெரிக்க தூதுக்குழுவின் பேச்சாளர் டேவிட் கெனடி கருத்து வெளியிட்டிருக்கின்றார். இக்கருத்து தமிழ் மக்களின் நலன் சார்ந்ததாக இருக்கின்றபோதிலும், என்ன நோக்கத்துடன் தற்போது அமெரிக்கா இந்த திட்டத்தை செயற்படுத்துகின்றது என்பதை தங்களால் புரிந்து கொள்ள முடியவில்லை என்றும் யாழ்.குடநாட்டிலுள்ள சில புத்திஜீவிகள் கூறியுள்ளனர்.

சர்வதேச விவகாரங்கள் தொடர்பில் கடும்போக்குடன் செயற்படும் சிறீலங்கா அரசாங்கத்தை தண்டிப்பது போன்று பாசாங்கு செய்வதன் மூலம் தனது பூகோள நலன்களை சாதிப்பதற்கு அமெரிக்கா முற்படுகின்றதோ என்று தமக்கு சந்தேகம் ஏற்பட்டுள்ளதாகவும் மேற்படி புத்திஜீவிகள் தெரிவிக்கின்றனர்.

ஆயினும், இலங்கைக்கு வருகை தந்துள்ள அமெரிக்க இராஜங்கத் திணைக்களத்தின் பூகோள குற்றவியல் நீதி விசாரணைக்கான தூதுவர் ஸ்டீபன் ரெப்பின் செயற்பாடுகள் வித்தியாசமான முறையில் அமைந்திருந்தமை தமிழ் மக்களின் மனங்களை கவர்ந்துள்ளது.

ஸ்ரீபன் ரெப் கடந்த 8ம் திகதி புதன்கிழமை யாழ்ப்பாணத்திற்கு வருகை தந்து யாழ்.அரச அதிபர் திருமதி இமெல்டா சுகுமாரை சந்தித்திருந்தார். ஏனைய நாடுகளிலிருந்து வருகை தரும் தூதுவர்களைப்போல் அல்லாது பல்வேறு விடயங்களையும் அவர் கேட்டறிந்திருக்கின்றார்.

குறிப்பாக யாழ்.மாவட்டத்திலுள்ள உயர்பாதுகாப்பு வலயங்கள், இராணுவத்தின் நிலைகள் மக்கள் மீள்குடியேற்றம் செய்யப்படவேண்டிய இடங்கள், இராணுவத்தினர் தற்போது அமைத்துள்ள புதிய முகாம்கள் தொடர்பான விபரங்கள் போன்றவற்றை விரிவாக கேட்டறிந்தார். யாழ்.மாவட்டச் செயலகத்திலுள்ள மாவட்டத்தின் கட்டமைக்கப்பட்ட பெரிய புவியியல் வரைபடமொன்றினுடாக மேற்படி விபரங்களை அவர் அறிந்து கொண்டார்.

மேலும் யுத்தத்தின்போது காணாமல்போனவர்கள் தொடர்பான விபரங்கள், தமிழ் மக்கள் எதிர்நோக்கும் இன்னல்கள் தொடர்பிலும் அவர் கேட்டறிந்தார். அரச அதிபர் சிறீலங்கா அரசிற்கு சார்பான கருத்துக்களை கூறியபோதிலும் ஸ்டீபன் ரெப் அதனை பெரியளவில் கவனத்தில் எடுக்கவில்லை. மறுநாள் 9ம் திகதி வியாழக்கிழமை முல்லைத்தீவு மாவட்டத்திற்குச் சென்ற தூதுவர் செல்வபுரத்திலுள்ள யூதா தேவாலயத்தில் பொதுமக்களைச் சந்தித்து அவர்களின் குறைகளை கேட்டறிந்தார்.

இதுவரை வடக்குக் கிழக்கு மாகாணங்களிற்கு வருகை தந்த ஏனைய நாட்டுத் தூதுவர்கள் எவரும் பொதுமக்களை நேரடியாகச் சந்தித்து அவர்களின் குறைகளைக் கேட்டறியாத நிலையில், அமெரிக்கத் தூதுவர் மக்களைச் சந்தித்துள்ளமை மக்கள் மனதில் சிறியதொரு நம்பிக்கையினைத் தோற்றுவித்துள்ளது.

அமெரிக்கத் தூதுவர் என்பதை அறிந்த மக்கள் தமது வேதனைகளை வெளிப்படையாகவே கொட்டித்தீர்த்தனர். யுத்தகாலத்தில் காணாமல்போனவர்கள் தொடர்பில் அவரிடம் எடுத்துக் கூறிய மக்கள் யுத்தம் நிறைவடைந்த பின்னர் நேரடியாக இராணுவத்திடம் தாங்கள் கையளித்த தமது பிள்ளைகள், தமது கணவன்மார் தொடர்பிலும் இதுவரை எந்தவொரு தகவலும் இல்லையென்று கண்ணீர் மல்க கதறியழுதவாறு கூறினர்.

1990 ஆம் ஆண்டு யுத்தம், 2004 ஆம் சுனாமி இயற்கைப்பேரழிவு அதனைத் தொடர்ந்து இறுதி யுத்தம் என்று பல பேரழிவுகளை சந்தித்த பின்னர் தற்போது மீளக்குடியேறியுள்ள தங்களுக்கு இதுவரை எந்தவித அடிப்படைத் தேவைகளும் ஏற்படுத்தித் தரப்படவில்லை என்றும் கூறினர். மேலும் பெண்களுக்கு பாதுகாப்பு இல்லையென்றும் அவர்கள் இராணுவத்தினரால் துன்புறுத்தப்படுகின்றனர் என்றும் சில பெண்கள் பாலியல் வன்முறைக்கு உட்படுத்தப்பட்டிருக்கின்றனர் என்றும் அவர்கள் தெரிவித்தனர்.

இலங்கையில் ஏனைய இனங்களைப்போன்று தமிழ் இனமும் சமமான உரிமைகளுடன் வாழ விரும்புவதாகவும் கூறிய முல்லை மக்கள், இவ்விடயத்தில் அமெரிக்கா தலையிட்டு நிலையான நிம்மதியான தீர்வொன்றை பெற்றுத்தர வேண்டும் என்றும் வலியுறுத்தினர். அமெரிக்கத் தூதுவர் ஏறக்குறைய 3 மணித்தியாலங்கள் வரை மக்களுடன் கலந்துரையாடி அவர்களின் வேதனைகளைப் பதிவாக்கினார்.

10ம் திகதி வெள்ளிக்கிழமை கிளிநொச்சிக்குச் சென்ற அமெரிக்கத் தூதுவர் ஸ்டீபன் ரெப் குழுவினர் அங்கும் பொதுமக்களைச் சந்தித்து கலந்துரையாடினர். முதல்நாள் வியாழக்கிழமை முல்லைத்தீவில் தனியிடமொன்றில் பொதுமக்களைச் சந்தித்ததால் அவர்கள் சென்ற பின்னர் இராணுவத்தினர் அந்த மக்களை விசாரணைக்குட்படுத்தியதை அறிந்த அமெரிக்கத் தூதுவர் கிளிநொச்சியில் பொது இடத்தில் மக்களைச் சந்திக்காமல், பல்வேறு இடங்களுக்கும் சென்று நேரடியாகவே மக்களுடன் கலந்துரையாடினார்.

முல்லைத்தீவு மக்கள் கூறிய அதே வேதனையான கருத்துக்களையே கிளிநொச்சி மக்களும் அமெரிக்க தூதுவரிடம் எடுத்துக் கூறியுள்ளனர். மக்களின் வேதனைகளையும் விம்மல்களையும் பதிவாக்கிச் சென்றுள்ள அமெரிக்கா, சிறீலங்கா அரசு தொடர்பிலும் ஈழத்தமிழர் தொடர்பிலும் என்ன நிலைப்பாட்டை எடுக்கப்போகின்றது என்பதே தமிழ் மக்கள் மத்தியிலுள்ள எதிர்பார்ப்பாகவுள்ளது. நிலையான தீர்வு வழங்கப்பட வேண்டியதன் அவசியம் குறித்து ஈழத்தமிழ் மக்களும் புலம்பெயர்ந்த தமிழ் மக்களும் தொடர்சியாக நடத்தி வரும் போராட்டங்களின் மத்தியில் அமெரிக்கா தற்போது தமிழ் மக்கள் மீது கரிசனை காட்டுவதாக வெளிப்படுகின்றது.

இந்தக் கரிசனையானது தமிழ் மக்களின் நலன்களுக்குச் சார்பானதா என்ற சந்தேகம் நிலவுகின்ற நிலையில் சார்பானதாக அமையவேண்டும் என்பதே மக்களின் எதிர்பார்ப்பாகவுள்ளது. உலக வல்லரசான அமெரிக்கா நினைத்தால் ஈழத்தமிழ் மக்களுக்கு நிலையான நிம்மதியான தீர்வொன்றைப் பெற்றுதர முடியுமென்று இன்றுவரை தமிழ் மக்கள் நம்புகின்றனர்.

இந்த நம்பிக்கை வீண்போக கூடாது. அமெரிக்கா மீண்டும் ஒரு முறை தமிழ் மக்களை ஏமாற்றக் கூடாது. சர்வதேச நாடுகளும் அமெரிக்காவும் இணைந்து தமிழ் மக்களுக்கு நிலையானதொரு தீர்வினைப் பெற்றுத் தருவதற்கு புலம்பெயர் தமிழ் மக்கள் தொடர்ந்தும் குரல் கொடுக்கவேண்டும் என்பதே ஈழத்தமிழ் மக்களின் இன்றைய எதிர்பார்ப்பாகவுள்ளது.

நன்றி :ஈழமுரசு

Sops for cruise liners at Chennai Port to stay

By G Saravanan
Published in The New Indian Express, Chennai on February 19, 2012:
CHENNAI: With a view to wooing more cruise liners to the Chennai Port, its management on Saturday announced the continuation of concessions for such ships on vessel-related charges while docking.
According to sources, the board of trustees governing the Chennai Port during a meeting held recently gave its nod for extending the concession for one more year for all cruise liners visiting the port in 2012.
As part of the concession scheme, a flat 20 per cent discount would be offered  on vessel-related charges like port dues, berth hire charges and pilotage to all the vessels carrying passengers for an ocean trip taken for pleasure, excluding regular passenger vessels running between Chennai and Port Blair.
In the past two years (till February second week), about 14 vessels operated by internationally renowned cruise liners have docked at the Chennai Port and brought over 7,000 passengers.
This kind of concessions would help the port to exhibit it as an important destination among the world’s cruise liners’ handling ports, sources told Express.
The move also comes in the backdrop of the Chennai Port Trust struggling to meet its revenue targets for this fiscal due to the Madras High Court’s ban on handling dusty cargoes like coal and iron ore a few months ago.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

ராஜீவ் காந்தியை கொன்றது பிரபாகரனல்ல சி.ஐ.ஏ : விமல் வீரவன்ச

ராஜீவ்காந்தியைக் கொன்றால் தமது இயக்கத்திற்கு பாதகம் வருமென்பதை உணராத முட்டாள் இல்லை பிரபாகரன் என அமைச்சர் வீரவன்ச, விடுதலைப்புலிகளின் தலைவர் பிரபாகரனைப் பற்றி புகழ்ந்துரைத்துள்ளார்.
ராஜீவ் காந்தி கொலைச் சம்பவம் தொடர்பில் கருத்துரைக்கையிலேயே அவர் இவ்வாறு தெரிவித்துள்ளார்.
பிரபாகரனுக்கே தெரியாமல், தமிழகத்தில் இருந்த விடுதலைப் புலிகள் இயக்கத்தினரை வைத்து ராஜீவ் காந்தியை அமெரிக்காதான் கொலை செய்துள்ளது. எனவும் அவர் தெரிவித்துள்ள கருத்து தற்போது பெரும் பரபரப்பை ஏற்படுத்தியுள்ளது.
இதுகுறித்து அவர் மேலும் தெரிவிக்கையில்
அமெரிக்க உளவுப் பிரிவான சிஐஏ திட்டத்தின்படிதான் ராஜீவ் காந்தி படுகொலை செய்யப்பட்டுள்ளார்.
விடுதலைப் புலிகளின் தலைவர் பிரபாகரன் தானாகவே முட்டாள்தனமான தீர்மானங்களை எடுத்திருக்க மாட்டார் என நான் திடமாக நம்புகிறேன்.
ராஜீவை படுகொலை செய்வதன் மூலம் விடுதலைப் புலிகள் இயக்கத்துக்கு ஏற்படக் கூடிய பாதக நிலைமைகள் குறித்து பிராபகரன் கவனம் செலுத்தாமல் இருந்திருக்க முடியாது.
பிரபாகரனுக்கு தெரியாமல் தமிழகத்தில் இருந்த தமிழீழ விடுதலைப் புலிகளிடம் அமெரிக்க உளவுப் பிரிவு, ராஜீவை படுகொலை செய்யும் ஒப்பந்தத்தை ஒப்படைத்திருக்க வேண்டும் என்பதே எனது நம்பிக்கை.
காந்தி குடும்பத்தினர் இந்தியாவை ஆட்சி செய்யும் வரையில் தெற்காசிய பிராந்தியத்தில் தங்களால் ஆதிக்கம் செலுத்த முடியாது என்பதை அமெரிக்கர்கள் உணர்ந்திருந்ததால்தான் இந்த படுகொலை சம்பவம் நிகழ்ந்துள்ளது என்றுள்ளார்.
மகிந்த ராஜபக்ஷவின் மிக நெருங்கிய நண்பர் விமல் வீரவன்ச. சிங்கள அரசின் அமைச்சரவையில் இருக்கும் ஒருவர் கூறியுள்ள கருத்து அந்த அரசின் கருத்தாக அமைய இடமுண்டு. சிறீலங்கா அரசு மீது சர்வதேச சமுதாயம் கொண்டு வரும் அழுத்தம் காரணமாக அது தாறுமாறாக கதைக்க ஆரம்பித்துள்ளது. போகும் போக்கில் மேலும் பல செய்திகள் விமல் வீரவன்ச வாயால் வரக்கூடிய வாய்ப்புண்டு.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Despite fogging, mosquito menace thrives in Chennai CIty

Published in The New Indian Express, Chennai on February 16, 2012:
CHENNAI:  Despite the Chennai Corporation’s ‘routine’ fogging and other such operations, mosquito menace continues unabated across the city. Barring a few posh localities, where the civic body gives more emphasis and regular fogging, considering the influence of high-profile residents, most parts of the Chennai Corporation, from Edayanchavadi in the north to Uthandi in the south, are reeling under the constant attack of these winged monsters throughout the day.
According to sources in Ripon Building, out of the total complaints registered at the Corporation’s public helpline number (1913), about 70 per cent were mosquito related. Though most of the mosquito-menace reports (from January to April) used to emerge from areas of north Chennai in the previous years due to presence of water hyacinths on Captain Cotton Canal and Buckingham Canal, this time it has been a different story, as substantial number of complaints came from the central and south Chennai areas.
Admitting that there has been a spurt in mosquitoes in the Corporation areas, City Health Officer P Kugananthan told City Express that the civic body is taking all possible steps to contain the menace. “We have asked our field officers to monitor and intensify the fogging and fumigation operations in the severly affected areas. We have also instructed them to increase it on a need basis,” he said.
Though complaints are pouring in from all parts of the city about the menace, the areas on the banks of water channels are the highly affected.
If the situation goes unchecked, it will lead to a health disaster in the Corporation areas,” A Rajan of Thiruvotriyur told City Express.
 According to sources, repeated complaints of mosquito menace were reported from Thiruvotriyur, Washermenpet, Kodungaiyur, Vyasarpadi, Pulianthope, Kolathur, Madhavaram, Mathur, Manali, Perambur, Anna Nagar, Mogappair, Ambattur, Maduravoyal, Virugambakam, Ramapuram, Madipakkam, Adambakkam, Alandur, Nanganallur, Velachery, Mylapore, Ashok Nagar, Adyar and Thiruvanmiyur.
As the menace goes unchecked, several residents welfare association both in north and south Chennai areas have appealed to the Corporation Commissioner to conduct massive fogging along the water canals crisscrossing the city to stop mosquito breeding. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Sigh of relief for EXIM traders as Chennai Trade Recovery goes

By G Saravanan
Published in The New Indian Express, Chennai on Feb 15, 2012:

CHENNAI: Hundreds of EXIM traders using the Chennai Port for export and import of various goods through containers will be heaving a sigh of relief from Wednesday as the illegal collection of ‘Chennai Trade Recovery’ (CTR) surcharge would be withdrawn with effect from February 15.
At a marathon meeting organised by the Chief Commissioner of Customs, Chennai Zone, on Tuesday with all the stakeholders after the Madras High Court’s direction, a representative of the Chennai and Ennore Steamer Agents Association (CHENSAA) made the official announcement that the collection of CTR surcharge would be withdrawn from Wednesday morning.
Sources in the EXIM trade estimated that the shipping liners, under the guise of collecting trade recovery (from the Port users) could have collected about Rs 1,000 crore in the last six months alone.
According to trade sources, different shipping liners first imposed the surcharge from August 15 last year with a starting charge of about 65 USD per container. In the last six months, the surcharge, which was imposed citing congestion and poor evacuation mode inside the port, peaked to $200 per container. With the traders complaining that the collection of CTR was unjustified, the Chennai Port Trust management took up the issue with the Shipping Ministry.
Though the ChPT management termed the CTR collection illegal and even sent notices to a few shipping companies seeking explanation, shipping liners were reluctant and continued their collection spree.
With the shipping liners failing to withdraw CTR despite appeals, Union Shipping Minister G K Vasan, in November last, took up the issue with the Commerce Ministry and promised the EXIM traders a solution.  On the other hand, a group of traders went to the HC seeking remedy to numerous problems (including CTR) they were facing in the Port. Based on the HC’s direction, the Chief Commissioner of Customs on Tuesday, organised the meet, which ended the problem.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

'Relax visa restrictions, bring people (of Pakistan and India) closer'

CHENNAI:  A Pakistani human rights activist on Sunday appealed to both the Indian and Pakistani governments to relax their visa restrictions to increase people-to-people contact between the neighbouring countries. 
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a programme organised at SRS Sarvodaya Girls Hostel here, Saeeda Diep, chairperson of Institute for Peace and Secular Studies (IPSS), said, “Relaxing the visa controls would go a long way in mending the strained relationship between the neighbouring countries. People on both sides are eager to increase their base-level people-to-people contacts.
To prevail upon the Pakistani regime and its Prime Minister, the IPSS has recently launched a nation-wide signature campaign targeting educated youth in the country. “Within the two weeks into the campaign, we are getting good response from youths and we planned to collect about one lakh signatures and submit the petition with the Prime Minister (of Pakistan) on August 14,” Saeeda told Express.
If visa controls are relaxed and people were allowed to visit frequently on either sides just like how Indians visiting Nepal, it will not only benefit the people on both sides, who have different opinions about each other, but also help to mend discontinued relations living apart (on both sides) for decades,” Saeeda added.
She also asked her counterparts in India to launch a similar signature campaign here to appeal to the Indian Prime Minister to take affirmative steps towards relaxing the visa restrictions.

5-ball over killed India's win in Adelaide? Just a 5-ball over?

Source: http://www.espncricinfo.com/commonwealth-bank-series-2012/engine/current/match/518960.html

End of over 29 (4 runs) India 126/4 (111 runs required from 21 overs, RR: 4.34, RRR: 5.28)
MS Dhoni    6* (4b 1x4)      NLTC Perera    4-0-21-1
G Gambhir    63* (75b 4x4)      SL Malinga    4-0-23-1

Malinga to Dhoni, 1 run, 137.5 kph, opens the face of the bat and runs it down to third man
Malinga to Gambhir, FOUR, 135.8 kph, nicely controlled! Short delivery rising on the shoulder and Gambhir moved across and controlled the pull well down to fine leg on one leg
Malinga to Gambhir, 1 run, 138.2 kph, straight on the pads and he clips it away down to square leg
Malinga to Dhoni, 2 runs, 140.8 kph, low full toss on the pads and he clips it down towards deep square leg
Malinga to Dhoni, 1 run, 129.5 kph, short and wide and he slashes it down to square third man, the fielder does really well to sprint across and fire in the throw, limits it to just a single
Just a 5-ball over? 

Burma’s Trust Deficit


There are few national anniversaries in Burma more significant than the one it commemorated on Sunday. It was on this day 65 years ago that Burmese independence leader Aung San and his Shan, Chin and Kachin counterparts signed the Panglong Agreement, which served as the basis for the creation of a federal Union of Burma.
But Union Day is not just one of Burma's most important occasions—it is also one of its most bizarre.
After all, a military coup that ended parliamentary rule just 15 years later also effectively nullified this historic agreement. Fifty years after taking power, the military continues to impose its own narrow notions of “unity” on the country's many ethnic minorities.

However, the fact that Burma still marks Union Day on Feb. 12 is some cause for hope. It shows that Aung San’s vision of a federal union, which he did not live to see, remains the most viable alternative for a country that desperately needs to heal its internal divisions. Half a century of unity at gunpoint, which has left the country weak and vulnerable to exploitation by its far more powerful neighbors, has only served to underline the need to return to sounder principles.
Amid all the talk of “reforms” since last year, countless voices have chimed in about what Burma really needs in order to move forward. Generally, the West has called for free and fair elections and an end to ethnic conflict, while the rest of Asia has stressed the need for economic development through foreign investment.
While these are indeed essential to creating a peaceful and prosperous country, they will have little positive impact if one other key ingredient is missing: trust.
Trust will be the single most important factor in determining whether Burma is ready, at long last, to realize its true potential as a nation. Without it, even the progress that we have seen since last year would have been unthinkable. If opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi hadn't decided that she could trust President Thein Sein, Burma would still be stuck in the stalemate of the past two decades.
But Burma still suffers from an enormous trust deficit. Beginning with its negation of the Panglong Agreement, and culminating with its refusal to recognize the results of Burma's 1990 elections, the military has a long record of broken promises. Just last week, it resumed attacks on Shan rebels two months after reaching a ceasefire deal, indicating that it still sees little need to honor agreements.
On the political front, things are, at least so far, somewhat better. Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) has been able to prepare for upcoming by-elections without facing the sort of harassment it has had to deal with in the past. Moreover, a visiting UN envoy has said that Burma might allow election monitors to observe the polls—a sign that at least some in power recognize the need to win the trust of others, rather than simply demanding it.
While many still feel that the government is merely taking a calculated risk in allowing the NLD to make a comeback, in the expectation that this will lead to a lifting of sanctions, it would be making a serious mistake if it believed that this alone will be enough to save Burma's economy. Although potential investors are now lining up for a chance to see what the country has on offer, few will stick around when they realize that it lacks any meaningful system of legal protections, as British risk assessment research company Maplecroft highlighted last week.
While Suu Kyi has often correctly stated that Burma needs to restore rule of law if it wants to develop as a nation, she has also noted that this is more than a matter of introducing new laws. Even the most enlightened laws have little value if no one has any confidence that they will be properly enforced and fairly applied.
If Burma's rulers truly want to end the country's disastrous isolation, they will have to begin by proving  that they can be taken at their word. 
This will mean going beyond the current charm offensive and taking measures to rein in elements of the military that still regard themselves as laws unto themselves.  
It will also require an acknowledgment of how far the country has strayed from its founding principles,  and a firm commitment to keeping promises made to its ethnic peoples. Without this, Burma will be hard-pressed to emerge from the past half-century of unmitigated misery.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Chennai student stabs 'strict' teacher to death

By Kumar Chellappan
Tamil Nadu, a state known for its model teacher-student relation, went chillon Thursday when a 15-year-old schoolboy murdered his Hindi teacher in the class room in front of his classmates.
Thirty-nine year old Uma Maheswari, the Hindi teacher of the St Mary’s Anglo Indian School, situated just opposite to Madras High Court, was stabbed in the neck, stomach and back by the student (name withheld as he is a minor).
Father A Bosco, the school administrator, told reporters that the incident took place at 10 50 in the morning. Though Uma Maheswari was rushed to General Hospital, she had succumbed to the wounds.
The boy, who rushed out of the classroom was overpowered by the school staff and handed over to the police. He had been sent to the juvenile home. According to Father BoscoUma Maheswari used to write in the school diary about the not so satisfactory performance of the student in his studies and he got enraged over this. The administrator also said that the boy had come to the class with the knife hidden in his bag.
He ran ahead of the rest of the class mates to enter the classroom, to see the teacher sitting on her chair. He went up to her, drew out the knife and began stabbing her,” said Bosco. The few students in the classroom were so dazed and shocked that they could not believe what they were seeing. Soon they raised an alarm that brought the teachers from other classes, who rushed the bleeding Maheswari to the government hospital, where she was declared brought dead.
Most of the students described the teacher as an affable person. Students, parents and teachers were yet to come out of the shock over such a ghastly killing inside a school, described as the first of its kind in the state, according to police officials.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

CHENNAI CORPORATION: Soon, GIS-based survey of property

By G Saravanan
Published in The New Indian Express, Chennai on Feb 8, 2012:
CHENNAI: With a view to streamline its property tax assessment and collection system, the Chennai Corporation will soon launch a comprehensive field survey of properties in the Adyar Zone using GIS-based property tax information system.
According to sources, the civic body will soon call for tenders to conduct the comprehensive field survey of properties in the Adyar Zone, comprising 13 wards (from 170 to 182) to implement the technology-enabled system.
The work covering about one lakh property tax assessees in the zone would be completed in three months, sources said. Adyar Zone has been identified for the pilot project as it has the largest number of property tax assessees among the civic body’s 15 zones. After completion of the survey work in this residential zone, the civic body will implement the system in all 15 zones, in a phased manner.
As part of the project, officials of the civic body studied similar GIS-based systems adopted in 15 different corporations in the country to identify the different types of technical problems faced by such civic bodies during implementation.
The data collected by digital mapping from the National Remote Sensing Centre, an important segment of ISRO, would be used for the implementation of the system. Data pertaining to property tax number, patta, power and water supply about the assesse would also be included in the system.
Once the system is implemented in the entire Corporation limits, all new applications seeking building approvals would be registered with the system and cases under assessment of property would be detected easily, sources said.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Maldives President resigns amid protests

In a dramatic development, Maldivian President Mohamed Nasheed announced his resignation over television on Tuesday. Vice President Dr.Waheed will hold reigns till a new arrangement is made. A new arrangement is expected to be in place over the next few days.
In a message to the people, Dr.Waheed said: “During this dangerous situation facing the nation it is my duty to say a few words. I support the peaceful efforts of a large number of Maldivians trying to protect the Maldives constitution and religion. At this time I call upon all the institutions especially law enforcement agencies (the military) to uphold the constitution and the laws of the country. Refrain from obeying unconstitutional and illegal instructions. During this difficult time no chance should be given to anyone trying to hurt the people of our country or damage their property, especially no room should be afforded to those who would damage news agencies and media. I am saddened that VTV and other places in Male’ have been attacked. I call on those who are involved in this to immediately cease all such activities. As your Vice President I am prepared to do anything possible to overcome this situation.”
According to residents in Male, there have been pitched battles between police and the military for the past few days. The police were fewer in number, and the country was going nowhere, one of them, a professional resident in Male said. The situation is peaceful now with the Army patrolling the streets, he added.
Earlier in the day about 50 police personnel took control of the state broadcaster in the capital, Male. They had earlier refused to break up a demonstration of opposition supporters. The Army stepped in and reportedly used teargas to break up a demonstration by supporters of ex-President Maumoon Abdul Gayoom.
Tensions have been on the rise since last November since the SAARC summit where monuments of all participating nations were put up. The Opposition said this was an attempt to bring in other religions. The Pakistani monument, which had Buddhist drawings at its pedestal, was among the first ones to be vandalised.
The scene shifted to Male, with the Opposition accusing Mr.Nasheed of being a moderate islamist who wanted to allow entry of other religions. It did not help that the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillai, in her speech at The Majlis, referred to flogging ass barbaric and espoused the cause of women’s rights. Again, the opposition flocked to Male.
Male held on because Mr.Nasheed’s support base was mainly in the two cities – Male and Addu. Also, Mr.Nasheed and his team have been at pains to explain that the Opposition’s charges were baseless. Apart from speaking to people, the team went on a slander campaign against the Opposition. The better equipped Opposition was up to the challenge. It responded with a series of charges and behind the scenes moves, including re-activating its people within the government machinery.
Tensions again escalated after the Army arrested a criminal court judge last month. With this arrest, the Nasheed regime alienated the entire judiciary, and lawyers. They too joined in the protests.
There is also a sub-plot in the new drama unfolding in The Maldives. The new outfit floated by the former President Gayoom, PPM, is engaged in a bitter battle with the party he founded, DRP. PPM has been the most active in the recent months, and has been thinking of innovative ways of getting support from across the islands. PPM representatives also have fanned across to Colombo and New Delhi. In Colombo, President Mahinda Rajapaksa refused to grant an audience, according to PPM sources.
Mr.Nasheed has had a hard time since he came to power in 2008. He headed the first democratically-elected government, but did not have adequate support in The Majlis, leading to an impasse on most issues of governance. Mr.Nasheed had had the staunch support of both Colombo and New Delhi so far.
Mr. Gayoom’s supporters are sore that they have been given the cold shoulder by both India and Sri Lanka. They told The Hindu that it would a fallacy for both countries to keep putting all the eggs in the MDP basket.

Saturday, February 4, 2012



"As per Cabinet note dated 31.10.2003, the decision regarding spectrum pricing was to be taken by Finance Minister and MOC&IT and after this decision was taken, Mr. P. Chidambaram agreed that it would be the price as discovered in the year 2001 and also told Mr. A. Raja that there is no need to revisit the same. This decision was subsequently conveyed to the Hon’ble Prime Minister also. To that extent, there is material on record."

"One may be acting innocently and other may be actuated by criminal intention. Innocuous, inadvertent or innocent acts do not make one party to the conspiracy."

CC No. 01(A)/11
Dr. Subramanian Swamy Vs. A. Raja & others
Present: Complainant Dr. Subramanian Swamy in person with Sh. Tarun Goomber, Mrs. (Dr.) Roxna Swamy and Sh. P. N. Mago Advocates.
This order shall dispose of plea of the complainant for summoning Sh. P. Chidamabaram, the then Finance Minister, as an accused in this case.
2. The complainant claims to be a public spirited citizen, well versed in advanced economics, finance and mathematics, and he is also familiar with the current legal, social and political paradigm. He further claims that being a law abiding citizen, he bonafide believes that it is his duty to set into motion the legal process whenever instances of grave corruption impinging on national interests come to his attention. It is further claimed that the complainant wants the punishment of the offender in the interest of the society, being one of the objects behind the penal statutes for the larger good of the society.
3. It is alleged that accused A. Raja was Union Minister of Communications and Information Technology (he ceased to be by way of his resignation from the post on November 14, 2010), and other known/ unknown accused persons who are/ were involved in this larger conspiracy which was a skulduggery to take wrongful gain for themselves and to give the wrongful loss to the nation not only in monetary terms but also to pose a threat to India's national security. The above stated accused persons in connivance with presently unnamed others and some other unknown persons dishonestly and fraudulently misappropriated the nation's resources and wealth to take the wrongful gain for themselves and to give the wrongful loss to the nation by willful misallocation of 2 G Spectrum belonging to the nation and entrusted to accused A. Raja, which was under his control as Minister of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT), hence a public servant, by corrupt or illegal means by misusing his position, as a public servant, obtained for himself and for the other accused persons pecuniary advantage. All the accused persons are involved in these serious and grave offences and are liable to be tried and punished under the various provisions of The Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 [for brief 'PCA'].
4. It is further alleged that the documents with the Petitioner, some of them included and published in his recent book "Corruption and Corporate Goverance in India: Satyam, Spectrum and Sundaram (Har Anand Publishers, 2009), as well as those available as public documents from the CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation), ED (Enforcement Directorate), CVC (Central Vigilance Commissioner) and CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General) and from RTI (Right to Information) applications, make out a strong prima facie case of corruption, of fraud and gross illegalities carried out by accused No. 1 A. Raja [alongwith his co-conspirators] as per CAG Report.
5. It is further alleged that : (a) at all releavant times in 2007-2008, accused A. Raja was Union Minister of Communications and Information Technology. He ceased to be so when he resigned from the post on Nobember 14, 2010, and which was immediately accepted by the President of India on recommendation of the Prime Minister.
(b) Thus, at all relevant times till resignation, accused A. Raja was a public servant within the meaning of Section 2(c) of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988, more particularly Section 2(c)(i) and (viii).
(c) On 14.11.2010, the accused ceased to be a Union Minister and hence, no more entitled to the safeguard of Sanction under Section 19 of the PCA.
6. It is further alleged that the matter comes within the scope of Sections 13(1)(c), (d) and (e) of the PCA. It arises primarily from the awarding by accused A. Raja and his co-conspirators, of new Unified Access Service (UAS) Licences (Licences for allotment of 2G Spectrum), to two unqualified and undeserving Real Estate Companies, Swan Telecom (now renamed Etisalat DB) and Unitech Wireless (renamed as Telenor operating as Uninor). This arose in the following manner:
(1) The Department of Telecommunications [DoT], is a department of the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, Government of India, which Ministry at the relevant time in 2007-2008, was headed by accused A. Raja.
(2) On or about 24.09.2007, while inviting applications for these licences, DoT had announced that such applications would not be considered as were made after the cut-off date of 01.10.2007.
(3) The number of licence available for 2G spectrum (a scarce and extremely valuable national resource) was 122, spread over 22 service areas, called circles.
(4) By the cut-off date, the number of applications received was 575, made by some 41 corporations. Thus, it was necessary for DoT to evolve and execute a fair procedure for the allotment of these 122 licences among the 575 applications. Such fair procedure must necessarily promote the public interest.
(5) DoT had also to determine and announce the price at which these licences would be allotted. Earlier in 2001, the price prevailing had been determined by auction.
(6) But in 2001, there had been only approximately 4 million mobile telephones in operation, whereas by 2007-2008, the estimated number of mobiles was 350 million, and this number was growing at the rate of 10% per month.
(7) Thus, obviously allotting licences on the basis of 2001 prevailing prices would enable the allotees to make windfall profits, at the cost of the public exchequer: the public exchequer would only collect the 2001 price of spectrum, while the allotees would have the worth of 2008 market price of spectrum which judged by objectives standards was several multiples of the 2001 price.
(8) All concerned authorities: the Law Ministry, the Finance Secretary, the Secretary of the Ministry of Telecommunications, the Member (Finance) of DoT, and finally on 02.11.2007, even the Prime Minister, had expressed their views to accused A. Raja, recommending/directing consideration of:
(i) auction of licences wherever legally and technically feasible;
(ii) upward revision of entry fee, presently benchmarked at 2001 prices.
(9) The Law Minister, on being applied to for his advice had directed that in view of the importance of the case and various options indicated in the statement of the case, the whole issue must be first considered by an empowered Group of Ministers.
(10) By virtue of the mandatory Transaction of Business Rules, it was imperative for the First Accused to refer the matter to the Cabinet for a decision.
(11) As the Hon'ble Supreme Court observed while hearing this matter, that accused A. Raja even disregarded the written advice of the Prime Minister in an intemperate language.
7. It is further alleged that for no convincing reason at all, accused A. Raja ignored/ disobeyed all the directions/ advice set out in the previous paragraph subparas (8) and (9).
8. It is further alleged that both personally and through directions to his subordinates in DoT, accused A. Raja managed to get DoT to allot the aforesaid sought licences and the subsequent allotment thereon of Spectrum, on a fraudulently contrived basis of "first-come-first-served" at 2001 prices.
9. It is further alleged that the manouevres set out above, are made good from the documents available with the Complainant, which are copies of documents, the originals of which are with various Government agencies such as from the offices of the CVC (Chief Vigilance Commissioner), the CAG (Comptroller and Auditor General), the CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation), the ED (Enforcement Directorate) and the Registrar of Companies at Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai.
10. It is further alleged that a strong prima facie case for what is set emerges from the Performance Audit Report on the Issue of Licences and Allocation of 2G Spectrum by the Department of Telecommunications, Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, a Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India, prepared in 2010, submitted to the President of India and placed on the Table of both Houses of Parliament on 16.11.2010. Hereinafter, this report is referred to for brevity as the CAG Report.
11. It is further alleged that the "first-come-first-served" basis (hereinafter referred to as FCFS) of the allotment was not recommended in the instant facts and circumstances, by any regulatory body of the Telecom industry, and, in fact, the validity of such a basis has been rejected by a judgment of the Delhi High Court in 1993 [(1993) III AD Delhi 1013].
12. It is further alleged that in his capacity as Minister of Communications and Information Technology, accused A. Raja personally intervened and insisted (in definace of the recommendations/ directions of the functionaries enumerated in para 4 (8)) that the FCFS was adopted as the basis for allocation of limited and scarce 2G Spectrum.
13. It is further alleged that this basis itself was further rigged by accused A. Raja and his co-conspirators: it was interpreted to mean that all applicants would be considered not in the chronological order of their date of application, but in the order in which they fulfilled all the requirements contained in their letters of Allotment.
14. It is further alleged that accused A. Raja favoured two companies, Swan Telecom Pvt. Ltd., and Unitech Wireless Ltd., which not only had no experience in the field, but were actually ineligible to apply, e.g. they were not even registered, (as required by the rules), as Telecom companies at the time of allotment of the scarce 2G Spectrum; and their actual shareholding also made them ineligible to apply. The details of this manouevre are set out in detail in the CAG Report, which prima facie substantiates these details.
15. It is further alleged that the CAG Report has also found that no tender was invited or public auction was made nor a proper public notification was issued in this respect.
16. It is further alleged that in his D.O. No. 20-100/2007-AS.I dated 02.11.2007 to the Prime Minister, accused A. Raja even rejected the direction of the Law Minister that in view of the importance of the case and various options indicated in the Statement of the case, the whole issue must be first considered by an empoered Group of Ministers.
17. It is further alleged that under the Transaction of Business Rules of Government (Rule 7), it was required that when two Ministers disagree on a policy question, the matter be referred by the initiating Minister (in this case accused A. Raja) to the Cabinet for a decision. This accused A. Raja did not do.
18. It is further alleged that instead by his D.O No. 260/M(C&IT)/VIP/ 2007 dated 26.12.2007, accused merely informed the Prime Minister that the then Minister of External Affairs and the Solicitor General [who as Law Officer in this matter went against the Law Minister's decision] had encouraged him to go ahead and adopt the aforesaid FCFS basis; whereafter, in defiance of the Prime Minister's request that he delay the matter for a few days, the accused went ahead with the allotment.
19. It is further alleged that there is no ground for the accused to state, (as he does), that everything that he did in regard to the method of allotment of 2G spectrrum, and in regard to the determination of the rate at which it was alloted, was with the knowledge and approval of the Prime Minister.
20. It is further alleged that there was no urgency in the matter: the demand and applications for fresh spectrum had been pending since March 2006, yet, the necessary Cabinet approval was not taken for making allotment on a private basis. There is also no record that in the absence of a prior Cabinet approval, the action of the Minister had the categorical approval of the Prime Minister. In fact, on the contrary, by his letter dated 02.11.2007, the Prime Minister had suggested an auction of the 2G Spectrum and not its allotment on a FCFS basis, at the price prevailing for 1G spectrum in 2001 (when the mobile cell phone usuage was in its infancy).
21. It is further alleged that the entire episode of allotment of licences was conducted with subterfuge and in a hurry, when no such urgency can be seen by any person of prudence and integrity. All these skulduggery are documented in the CAG Report.
22. It is further alleged that this has resulted in a loss in revenue to the Government which the office of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India in his Performance Audit Report No. 19 of 2010-11 has estimated at Rs. 1,76,000 crores, thus making it perhaps the largest scam in India's history, if not in that of the world.
23. It is further alleged that accused A. Raja caused this loss, first by limiting the number of licences to be awarded by advancing the cut-off date to September 25, 2007 (that is, prior to the earlier cut-off date of October 1, 2007), by personally getting issued a press note on January 10, 2008, which was posted only in the Ministry website. Second, by adopting the scheme of allocating the licences on the basis of first-come-first-served (FCFS) at an arbitrarily fixed lower price benchmarked to the price prevailing in 2001, instead of much higher price determined by an option in 2008.
24. It is further alleged that : (a) As far as the first step cited above is concerned, the Hon'ble Single Judge Bench and subsequently the Hon'ble Division Bench of the Delhi High Court held in 2009 that the advancing of the cut-off date was arbitrary, unreasonable and illegal. Hon'ble Supreme Court thereafter, declined to interfere with the judgment which thus has become final.
(b) As far as the FCFS basis for licence award is concerned, it was not recommended by any regulatory body of the telecom industry, and in fact, the validity of such a basis has been rejected by a judgment of Delhi High Court in 1993 [(1993) III AD Delhi 1013]. But, on accused A. Raja's insistence, not only the FCFS was adopted as the basis for allocation of limited and scarce 2 G Spetrum but the basis itself was rigged to favour two companies, Swan Telecom and Unitech Wireless which had no experience in the field and were not even registered (as required by the rules) as telecom companies at the time of allotment of the scarce 2 G Spectrum.
25. It is further alleged that in fact, the CAG report holds at least 85 of the 122 licences granted are illegal and void.
26. It is further alleged that the Central Bureau of Investigation had registered an FIR on the alleged commission of the aforesaid offence but has not named any accused including the first accused herein. Despite this, complainant bringing this aspect to the notice of Director of the CBI, the agency has so far failed to perform its statutory duty under the law.
27. It is further alleged that the above facts make out the ingredients of Section 13 (1) (d) of the PCA that:
(i) Accused A. Raja while holding office as a public servant
(ii) obtained for some other person/ converted for the use of any other person
(iii) valuable thing/ pecuniary advantage, the aforesaid licences (spectrum property),
(iv) entrusted to him/ under his control as a public servant
(v) and he did so dishonestly/ fraudulently and without any public interest.
28. It is further alleged that within a few months of the allotment of 2G Spectrum licences to them, these two favoured companies, Swan Telecom (P) Limited and Unitech Wireless Limited sold their controlling shares, at about seven to eight times what they had paid to the Government as fees for allotment of both licence and 2G Spectrum. On this basis, it is possible to get a measure of the loss in revenue that the public exchequer incurred by adopting the FCFS basis and pegging the entry fees at 2001 prices.
29. It is further alleged that a thorough technical analysis done by Dr. Rohit Prasad and published as "Value of 2 G Spectrum in India" in Economic and Political Weekly January 23, 2010, vol. XLV, No. 4, reveals that the market price of spectrum calculated on widely varying assumptions significantly exceeds the upfront fees charged from the operators, especially Swan Telecom (P) Limited, and Unitech Wireless Limited. The CAG, however, using different techniques has estimated presumptive loss of Rs. 140,000+ crores, the '+' including the CDMA conversion etc. The total presumptive loss is placed at Rs. 1.76 crores.
30. It is further alleged that all the above paras relevant to the ingredients are prima facie established in the CAG Report.
31. It is further alleged that reading the Executive Summary, the CAG, a Constitutionally empowered body, has found prima facie that accused personally got issued the Letters of Intent to 85 applicants who were not qualified and were not-eligible to receive these licences in the first place and that this caused a total national loss of Rs. 1,76,000 crores in revenue foregone.
32. It is further alleged that there is also evidence that accused had an indirect personal/ family pecuniary interest in some of the aforesaid sales:
(a) Swan Telecom (P) Limited was earlier owned by the corporate house and subsidiaries of Mr. Anil Ambani and was known as Swan Capital (P) Limited, incorporated on May 3, 2006. Swan Capital applied for GSM circle licence in January, 2007. It already held the CDMA licence then. In February 13, 2007, it changed its name to Swan Telecom (P) Limited.
(b) In October 2007, after Mr. A. Raja as Minister of Communications and Information Technology announced the Dual policy enabling conversion of CDMA to GSM, Anil Ambani sold his controlling shares to two Maharashtra based real estate operators, viz., Mr. Shahid Balwa (Managing Director) and Vinod Kumar Goenka (Director), who had taken over the charge of the company, but which was back dated to be incorporated in July 2007.
(c) Since at the time of the application for licence by Swan Telecom (P) Limited, this Corporate House had an interest of more than 10% in Swan Telecom (P) Limited, this made Swan Telecom (P) Limited, ineligible to apply at all for the licence; yet it did so apply. In October 2007, Anil Ambani -owned subsidiary of Reliance Communications quit Swan Telecom (P) Limited, after the DoT announced a new telecom policy to permit CDMA to cross over to GSM.
(d) In January to March 2008, Swan Telecom (P) Limited, with the connivance of accused, bagged an allotment of licences in 13 circles worth Rs. 1537 crores..
(e) Within weeks of the allotment, the new owners of Swan Telecom (P) Limited., "sold" a 45% stake in the company to Etisalat (a UAE giant corporation with Pakistan Telecom and Communication Ltd.-PTCL share holding) for approximately Rs. 4,500/- crore. The "sale" was disguised in the form of a merger of Swan Telecom (P) Limited and Etisalat. Earlier such mergers were not permitted to allottees; but by his Office Note, accused personally altered this requirement to enable merger to be permitted if duly applied for.
(f) On December 17, 2008, the now much expanded Swan Telecom (P) Limited allotted Rs. 380 crore worth of shares to the Chennai based Genex Exim Ventures, a company floated only just four months before the deal, with a meager capital of Rs. One Lakh. There is no record of Genex making any payment for the share acquisition.
(g) According to the documents available with the Registrar of Companies, Chennai, Genex Exim Ventures was incorporated on September 17, 2008 with two directors Mr. Mohammed Hassan (58) and Mr. Ahamed Shakir (41)- who came from Kilukarai, a small coastal village in Ramanathapuram district in Tamil Nadu. Ahmed Syed Salahuddin (32) who represented the company on the board of Swan Telecom (P) Limited also came from the same village.
(h) There is more indication of a Tamil Nadu link especially when the corporate veil is pierced, and which ultimately leads to the family members of the DMK President Mr. Karunanidhi. Mr. Ahmed Syed Salahuddin, represented the company on the board of Etisalat DB, the new name of Swan, and not the Genex Directors. Ahmed is the younger son of Mr. Syed Mohammed Salahuddin, an NRI businessman who heads the Dubai-based real estate conglomerate ETA Ascon Star Group.
(i) The elder Salahuddin figures in a racket to defraud public funds that was inquired into by Justice Sarkaria Commission in 1976, and the said Commission held that he and Mr. Karunanidhi had entered into a conspiracy to defraud public funds by favouring him to build a flyover at the Gemini crossing, in return for purchasing distributing rights to a film produced by Mr. Karunanidhi.
(j) This group, the ETA Star Group, began its Indian operations in 2006 by floating several real estate firms across the State. At that time, accused was Union environment Minister and his party DMK had assumed power in Tamil Nadu.
(k) ETA signed an MoU with the Tamil Nadu Government for setting up an IT Special Economic Zone worth Rs. 3,750 crore when Mr. A. Raja became Telecom Minister in May, 2007. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Mr. Karunanidhi was present at the MoU singing ceremony for the proposed project at Kancheepuram, near Chennai, on a nearly 500 acre plot. Mr. Salahuddin was also awarded the contract to build the new TN Legislative Assembly building.
(l) This fact requires investigation that thus a large business group entered the Board of Swan Telecom (P) Limited, through a company with a meager Rs. One Lakh paid up capital. Incidentally, Genex Exim has not filed any documents with the authorities to show its source of income, even after acquiring Rs. 380 crore worth of shares from Swan Telecom (P) Limited.
(m) At other times too, accused, as Union Minister of Communications and Information Technology, had blatantly favoured Swan Telecom (P) Limited. This is evidenced, for example, from a most unusual deal struck between the said company and the state-owned BSNL, as follows:-
(I) The "intra-circle roaming deal" signed between the company and BSNL on September 13, 2008, was literally silent when it comes to money. According to the MoU, Swan Telecom could use spectrum, communication towers and the entire network of BSNL free of cost.
(II) Though the BSNL management suggested charging 52 paise per call, this clause was mysteriously absent in the MoU. BSNL was forced to sign this deal just 10 days before the sale of Swan's shares to Etisalat. It is not clear why an amount was not specified in the MoU and in the absence of a consideration what is the position of the Agreement entered into between the Company and BSNL. The arrangement helped swell Swan's coffers without the company investing a single rupee.
(III) BSNL Chairman and Managing Director, Mr. Kuldeep Goyal sought to quell the trouble by coining a new word for the agreement between Swan and BSNL as "Limited MoU", while they have never entered into an agreement in respect of "intra-circle roaming deal". The very description of "Limited MoU" itself is fishy and confusing.
(n) It was also in "The Pioneer" newspaper that Swan Telecom (P) Limited had planned to invest on a dictated price of Rs. 1,000 crore (i.e. 49% stake) in Green House Promoters, in which the family members of the accused have a controlling stake. However, they have had to shelve it since the scam controversy broke out.
(o) After the accused became a Union Minister of Environment and Forests in 2004, many of his close relatives floated real estate companies, Green House Promoters, Equass Estates and Kovai Shelters Promoters all of which have brothers, nephews and nieces of accused as directors on their boards. It is to be noted that such real estate companies require clearance from the Environment Ministry for their real estate projects.
(p) Mrs. M. A. Parameswari, wife of accused, joined as director of the company Green House Promoters after three years of its incorporation i.e., in February, 2007. The Minister has not disclosed this fact to the Prime Minister nor disclosed the source of income and asset allocation and thereby has committed a breach of Conduct Rules.
(q) Mrs. M. A. Parameswari, the aforesaid wife of accused, resigned from the Board of Green House Promoters on February, 2008, as part of a damage control process envisaged by the accused. However, Mrs. Parameswari could not transfer her holding/ stake from the company on the said date of resignation, giving room for investigators to show explicit violation of the service rules. On a later day, the said shares were transferred to the nephew of accused A. Raja, who is also a Government Pleader in Tamil Nadu.
(r) Besides amounts deposited therein from various sources in India, the account in Canada Bank, T. Nagar Branch, Chennai, of Green House Promoters has received considerable sums from abroad. The authorities have not been given any proof or clarity on the sources of the fund and its remittances.
(s) In 2006, Green House Promoters also opened a branch office at Singapore in order to avoid or escape public scrutiny and cut down direct flow of funds into its Indian counter-part. For this purpose, accused A. Raja and his family members not only violated the existing rules in respect of Green House Promoters (P) Limited, but also promoted another company through his kith & kin viz., Equass Estate (P) Limited. The said company's turnover was Rs. 755 crore on completion of just one year. The company has not filed any proper documents with Registrar of Companies, as required under Form No. 23AC (to be filled by privately owned companies specifying information on sale of goods manufactured, sale of goods traded, sale of supply of services, etc.).
(t) Accused A. Raja has failed to disclose the business interest of his wife and other relatives in the areas/ subjects falling under his jurisdiction as a Minister of Environment and Forests and also now as Minister of Communications and information Technology.
33. It is clear from the taped telephonic conversations made by the DGIT and now in the custody of the CBI, of Ms. Niira Radia, with one of the wives of Mr. Karunanidhi, regarding the Telecom Ministership for accused A. Raja after the 2009 General Elections to Lok Sabha, that there was a clear nexus for sharing the bribe arising from the sale of licences for 2 G Spectrum.
34. It is further alleged that:
(a) Accused as a Union Minister, has also misled Parliament by stating that his decision on 2G Spectrum allocation were never objected to by TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) or the Finance Ministry. By this, he has also committed breach of Parliamentary Privilege, which is also a matter of great collateral importance to this Complaint.
(b) Although, the Prime Minister was aware of the corrupt ways of the accused, it was perhaps the compulsions of coalition politics that kept the Prime Minister away from stepping in and setting things right.
(c) The Press has reported that whenever the accused was summoned by the Prime Minister, the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu Mr. Karunanidhi (whom the accused has frequently announced to be his "Beloved Leader" and "Mentor"), used to fly from Chennai and sort things out with the Congress leadership.
(d) While serving as Minister for Environment and Forests, accused's nephew Dr. R. Sridhar was selected as Deputy Director in the same Ministry by flouting the Norms of Appointment. He back-dated his resignation letter from the post since "The Pioneer" news daily revealed that he was holding 15% shares in a real estate company incorporated as Kovai Shelters (P) Limited. Accused A. Raja's two nieces R. Anandabhuvaneshwari and R. Sanatanalakashmi held another 15% each. The MD of Kovai, C. Krishnamoorthy was charged by the CBI in a mark-sheet fraud in the Pondicherry University, and is an accused on bail in the murder of the whistle blower employee of the University. A judge of the Madras High Court went public that a Central Minister [presumed as accused Raja] had telephoned him to grant bail to the murder accused Krishnamoorthy.
(e) An investigation report published by the Newspaper "Pioneer", brings out the names of the following persons involved in the 2G Spectrum Scam or in the Misuse of Power by the Minister. All these persons are either related or closely associated with Mr. Raja as noted below:-
Persons involved are:-
Mrs. M. A. Parameswari (wife of the accused)
Mr. A. M. Sadhik Batcha [from same town of Perambaur as the accused]
Mrs. Reha Banu (wife of Sadhik Batcha)
Mr. R. P. Paramesh Kumar (Nephew of the accused)
Mr. A. Kaliaperumal (Brother of the accused), [already questioned by the CBI in January 2010, on an FIR filed following the directions of the Chief Vigilance Commissioner on this matter].
Mr. B. Ram Ganes [son of Mr. Ramachandran elder brother of the accused].
Smt. Malarvizhi Ram [Niece of the accused].
35. It is further alleged that: (a) Unitech, another real estate company, got 22 licences for 22 circles, for a total of Rs. 1651 crore. After acquiring these licences, Unitech sold them for a huge sum of Rs. 6120 crore to a Norwegian company, TELENOR, which is a major telecom player in Pakistan & Bangladesh. The company had applied for licences in several names. Unitech Infrastructure, Unitech Builders and Estates, Aska Projects, Nahan Properties, Hudson Properties, Volga Properties, Adonis Projects and Azare Properties among them. They were able to merge all their licences when the accused as Telecom Minister, signed another dubious notification allowing this to happen.
(b) In the above deal the entry of a foreign firm having wide operations in Pakistan and Bangladesh into Indian Telecom Industry has been facilitated, which could evidently pose a threat to India's National Security. It is significant that the Union Home Ministry has raised objection regarding the unacceptable foreign links of Mr. Shahid Balwa of Swan/ Etisalat DB and of Syed Salahuddin to Genex. The Home Ministry points to the suspected links of these two key players to Pakistan and the Chinese Army. This is, however, a matter for another complaint.
36. It is further alleged that even his party chief, mentor and Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Mr. M. Karunanidhi rubbished the allegations against the accused, saying that leaders of certain political parties could not tolerate the rise of a Dalit. This scurrilous comment indicates that Mr. Karunanidhi is abetting the accused to evade the law.
37. It is further alleged that all the facts stated in above paragraphs, are culled from the Records available with the Registrar of Company Affairs which make out (along with the earlier paragraphs) that all the ingredients of Section 13(1) (e) of the PCA are present:
(i) the accused, by corrupt or illegal means
(ii) obtained for himself/ other persons a valuable thing/ pecuniary advantage.
(iii) he did so by abusing his position as a public servant.
Furthermore alternately, above paragraphs also make out that
(iv) the accused dishonestly/ fraudulently misappropriated/ otherwise converted for his own use/ allowed any other person so to do,
(v) property entrusted to him/ under his control as a public servant.
38. Furthermore alternately, above paragraphs also make out that:
(vi) the accused/ any person on his behalf, is in possession/ has been at any time during the period of his office, in possession of pecuniary resources/ property;
(vii) and the accused cannot satisfactorily account for these pecuniary resources/ property;
(viii) and these pecuniary resources/ property are disproportionate to his known sources of income.
39. The Government has so far not proceeded to prosecute the case Court. Therefore, as a public spirited citizen the complainant wishes to take up the matter and to initiate prosecution proceedings against the accused.
40. That therefore:
(1) As summarized in above paras, the offences committed by accused A. Raja come under Section 13(1) (c), (d) and (e) of the Prevention of Corruption Act;
(2) The facts of these offences committed by the accused A. Raja are already prima facie established from the CAG Report annexed herewith besides the facts and evidence submitted herewith, and fortified by the documents in the custody of the CBI, CVC, ED and the Registrar of Companies.
41. Hence, it is prayed that this Court, being Special Judge, under the Prevention of Corruption Act [1988] may:
(a) take Cognizance u/s 5(1) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 r/w the Criminal Procedure Code, and to set into motion prosecution proceedings against accused A. Raja, for the offences under Sections 13(1) (d) and (e) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988;
(b) appoint the Complainant as Prosecutor u/s 5(3) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988;
(c) Direct the CBI, the ED and other prosecuting agencies of the Government to assist the Complainant in conducting the case after cognizance is taken;
(d) Keeping in view the facts, events and circumstances stated herein above, take cognizance/ summon/ try and punish accused A. Raja, in accordance with law, in the interest of justice;
(e) Pass such other and further orders as are necessary in the interest of justice.
42. Hence this complaint.
43. The complainant has examined himself, in support of allegations in the complaint, as CW 1, and has deposed on 07.01.2010 as under:
"I have been a Member of Union Cabinet. I have held Cabinet rank position twice and been a Member of Parliament five times. I have a Ph. D. in Economic from Harvard University. Presently, I am President of the Janata Party, which was founded by Sh. Jai Prakash Narayan in 1977.
Being a law abiding citizen and a public spirited citizen well versed in Finance and Legal matters, bonafide believe that it is my duty to set into motion legal processes particularly in this case which is said to be the biggest corruption case, namely, 2G Spectrum allocation. In this matter, the offences were committed beginning with the act of awarding 122 licences to nine applicants on January 11, 2008. This act of awarding licences was on orders of the then Minister of Communications and Information Technology Mr. A. Raja, whom I have named as accused in my complaint. I also proposed as I have said in my complaint to include later under the provisions of the CrPC other persons as accused as part of larger conspiracy to defraud the nation. The prima facie case of my complaint is fully endorsed and supported by the report of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG). Copy of which report has been annexed alongwith my complaint. My complaint is Ex CW 1/1, which bears my signature at point A. I have also filed an affidavit duly sworn before Oath Commissioner alongwith my complaint. The same is Ex CW1/2. It bears my signature at point A and B. List of witnesses filed by me and list of documents filed alongwith my complaint also bears my signature at point A on both the sheets. Copy of report of CAG is also on the Court record and is marked as Mark-A. The ingredients of the offences made out in my complaint are stated concisely on page 9 para 29 and page 19 paras 35 and 36. It is also confirmed by the CAG report and summarized in the executive summery of the report which is reproduced on page 30 to 35 of my complaint. It is also my complaint that two licences Swan Telecoms and Unitech Wireless were illegally sold to two foreign companies namely Etisalat DB and Telenor within a few months. I have also pointed out on page 267 of my complaint that the Union Home Ministry has held that Etisalat DB is a National Security risk since it has connections with ISI of Pakistan. Also one of the board members of Etisalat DB by name Shahid Balwa is alleged to be an associate of the terrorist and proclaimed offender Dawood Ibrahim. I will seek the permission of this Court to summon this report from Home Ministry.
I have also made out an offence of disproportionate assets of the accused named A. Raja U/s 13(1) (e) of the PC Act. This are on pages 187 to 213 of my complaint. I also have brought out in my complaint on page 3 para 8 that all concerned authorities such as the Law Ministry, the Finance Secretary, the Secretary of the Ministry of Telecom, the Member Finance of the Department of Telecommunications and even the Prime Minister had expressed their views that accused Mr. A. Raja was not following the procedures which were in the interest of the country. This is also a violation of the mandatory transactions of business rules framed under Article 77 of the Constitution wherein it is required that when Ministers disagree, the matter must be taken to the Cabinet for the decision. This is attested by the CAG report which is at page 56 in this complaint in para 4.3.1. Accused Mr. A. Raja is according to the CAG report caused a loss to the nation of Rs. 1,76,000 crores by his arbitrary and deliberate advancing of the cut-off date and second, rejecting the advice of all concerned authorities to auction the licences and thereby, favoured a few of his intimate friends. In fact, the CAG report holds that at least 85 of the 122 licences granted on the orders of accused Mr. A. Raja are illegal and void. The Delhi High Court both at the level of Hon'ble Single Judge and Hon'ble Division Bench held the arbitrary fixing of the cut-off date as unreasonable and illegal. The judgments of the two benches are on pages 284 to 293 for the single bench judgment and page 294 to 315 for the Division Bench judgment. In my complaint, I have also provided evidence that the accused had indirect personal/ family/ party pecuniary interest in the awarding of the licences. I have provided evidence of the sharp rise in the assets of Mr. A. Raja, which are on pages 187 to 213 of the complaint and pages 216 to 220. Mr. A. Raja also favoured indirectly two companies, namely, Genex Exim Ventures and Green House Promoters and other connected interlocking companies. In the first named company Genex Exim Ventures, the real owner Mr. Ahmed Syed Salahuddin is an NRI businessman based in Dubai but has been given all the prestigious construction contract in Tamil Nadu by the DMK President and Chief Minister Mr. Karunanidhi. The recent construction of the Tamil Nadu Assembly building is also constructed by Mr. Salahuddin. In the second company, namely, Green House Promoters, for a time the wife of accused A. Raja, Mrs. Parmeswari was a Director. This is substantiated in the complaint on pages 214 to 227 and further pages 237 to 282. Both these companies assets have vastly increased and they have been able to buy shares in Swan Telecom whose new name is Etisalat DB, which is a UAE Corporation with 26% shares in the Pakistan Government owned company called PTCL.
In this connection, I humbly state that I had informed the CBI vide letter dated 30.11.2010, copy of which is contained in page 150 of my complaint informing the CBI that I intend to file a criminal complaint against the now former Telecom Minister Mr. A. Raja before a Special Judge in a designated Court, under the PC Act. The CBI has not taken any steps to register an FIR, specifically in the name of A. Raja. Copy of the letter which I written to CBI dated 30.11.2010 is annexure-11. I have put my signature again today at point A on the same. The said is Ex CW 1/3. I received a reply from CBI dated 08.12/13.12.10. The same is on the Court record and is Ex CW 1/4. Copy of the RC registered by CBI is Mark-B.
In view of all these evidence which I have submitted in the statement in brief, but is contained in details in my 375 pages complaint a strong prima facie case supported by documents and confirmed by the findings of the CAG report necessitates the cognizance of my complaint and a proper prosecution of the matter."
44. He further deposed on 17.12.2011 as under:
"This hon'ble Court has framed two charges of misconduct against accused A. Raja and recorded as follows:
Charge 1: Spectrum licences were issued at a very nominal price that was fixed in the year 2001. This is on the pages 21 and 22 of the charges. These were, however, not licences issued, but letters of intent. Licences according to the record began to be issued from 27.02.2008 and not from January 10th, 2008. In my documents volume II, page 59, Ex CW 1/5, there is a list of new UAS Licences, issued since 11.11.2003. This has to be read with volume III, page 11, Mark C. At page 23 of this document, there is an answer given to the Public Accounts committee regarding sale of stake by M/s Swan Telecom (P) Limited, wherein it is stated "that Swan Telecom was incorporated on July 13th, 2006. It received licences for 13 telecom circles in February/ March 2008. Similarly, in next paragraph of this document, it states "M/s Unitech Wireless Tamil Nadu (P) Limited was incorporated on August 10, 2007. It received licences for 22 telecom circles in February, 2008." A letter of intent is an intention of the Government provided the conditions are met of the licence to award the licence. This is also stated in the press release issued by the DoT on 10.01.2008. The second charge, which is charge No. 5 and on page 32 of the charges, it is recorded that Swan and Unitech were allowed to off-load their shares to Etisalat and Telenor respectively even before the roll-out and by selling their shares at several times what they paid to the Government for the licences.
I further state, as in my application paras 13 to 15, that accused A. Raja could not be guilty of these charges alone, but committed these offences with the active connivance of Sh. P. Chidambram, presently Home Minister, Government of India. As far as the first charge is concerned, both Sh. Chidambram and Sh. A. Raja, Ex PW-officio, were empowered by a 2003 Cabinet decision dated 31.10.2003, now Ex CW 1/6, to determine the spectrum price jointly and the relevant clause reads as under:
"Sub-clause (3) The Departmental of Telecom and the Ministry of Finance would discuss and finalize spectrum pricing formula, which will include incentive for efficient use of spectrum as well s disincentive for suboptimal usages".
Sh. Chidambram was aware of this empowerment. In his letter dated 15.01.2008, which is in volume I at page 55 in para 6 of the documents, addressed to the PM and the same is now Ex CW 1/7. Through this letter, he informed the Hon'ble Prime Minister vide para 6, sub-para(i) that "DoT and MoF would discuss and finalize the pricing formula for spectrum, which will include incentive for the efficient use of spectrum".
In his letter dated 21.04.2008, page 60 of Volume I, to Sh. A. Raja, now Ex CW 1/8, it was stated by Sh. Chidambram in para 2 that "after you have had an opportunity to examine the same may we meet and discuss and reach some conclusions? These conclusions could then be presented to the Hon'ble Prime Minister". This is further corroborated by paragraph 2 of the office memorandum dated 25.03.2011, which begins on page 43 Volume II, and a photocopy of the same is Mark D. The Hon'ble Prime Minister has also corroborated this in his statement made on the floor of Rajya Sabha on 24.02.2011. A computerized copy of the same is Ex CW 1/9. On page 9, last line, it is stated that "the Government's policy on the pricing of spectrum was taken on the basis of the Cabinet decision of 2003, which specifically left this issue to be determined by the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Telecommunications". The paragraph further reads "The two Ministers had agreed on this because of legacy considerations and I accepted their recommendation." As per para 7 of Ex CW 1/7, Sh. Chidambram informs the Hon'ble Prime Minister that "it is therefore clear that there are three separate concepts: (i) entry fee; (ii) charges for spectrum; and (iii) revenue share".
Therefore, in pursuance of this empowerment, the two Ministers, Sh. Chidambram and Sh. A. Raja, met on four occasions. The first meeting is dated 30.01.2008, the second meeting is dated 29.05.2008 and the third meeting on 12.06.2008 and then subsequently after an agreement was reached and meeting of minds took place, they together met the Hon'ble Prime Minister on 04.07.2008 and conveyed their agreement on the question of spectrum price in all three aspects, that is, entry fee, spectrum price and annual charges. The minutes of the meeting are available for 30.01.2008. A photocopy of the minutes is Mark E, in Volume II page 39. In the first paragraph of the said minutes, it is stated "Minister for Communications met the Finance Minister today on the subject of spectrum charges. Secretary, DoT, Advisor (Wireless) and I (Sh. D. Subbarao, the then Finance Secretary), were present." in paragraph 5 of the said Minutes, it is recorded that ''FM said that for now we are not seeking to revisit the current regimes for entry fee or for revenue share''. This is corroborated by letter Ex CW 1/7. In paragraph 13 of the said letter, that is, Ex CW 1/7, it is stated by Sh. Chidambram that ''this leaves the question about licencees who already hold spectrum over and above the start of spectrum. In such cases, the past may be treated as a closed chapter........''.
The CAG report Ex CW 1/10, page 26, refers to this letter of Sh. Chidambram to the Hon'ble Prime Minister dated 15.01.2008 at point A on this page. On page 27, the CAG concludes with the following observation:
''The Ministry of Finance should have insisted for Cabinet decision, in view of the following:
* Treating the authorization allowed by the Cabinet in 2003 for calculation of entry fee for migration of existing operators (BSOs and CMPs) to UASL regime based on the formula given by the TRAI (October 2003) as an open-ended one was a wrong interpretation of the DoT and particularly when Cabinet in the same decision had defined the role of MoF in the matter of spectrum pricing.
* Government of India (Transaction of Business) Rules 1961 provided for necessity of matter being placed before the Cabinet in case either involving financial implication on which the Minister of Finance desires or a difference of opinion arises between two or more Ministers.''
A photocopy exact of Government of India (Transaction of Business) Rules, running into three pages, is Ex CW 1/11.
I further state that Sh. Chidambram was aware at least on 09.01.2008 of what Sh. A. Raja was planning to do on 10.01.2008. Paragraphs 9, 10 and 11 of document Mark D make it clear that Sh. Chidambram had all along been apprised by his officials of unsuitability of fixing the price of spectrum at 2001 level and providing to licencees spectrum at zero price. It also confirms in paragraph 12 that a meeting was held on 30.01.2008 between the Ministers of Finance and Telecommunications and wherein it is stated "it was noted by the then Finance Minister that he was for now not seeking to revisit the current regimes for entry fee or revenue shares”. Para 14 of the same document further states to corroborate that "spectrum up to 6.2 MHz may not be priced”. Para 17 of the same document further states that "there was a way out by invoking clause 5.1 of the UAS Licence, which inter alia, provide for modification at any time the terms and conditions of the licence , if in the opinion of the Licensor it is necessary and expedient to do so in public interest or in the interest of security of State or for the proper conduct of the telegraphs”. As far as the second charge against Sh. A. Raja is concerned, namely, that Swan and Unitech were allowed to offload their shares to Etisalat and Telenor. This is also stated in documents dated 05.11.2008, now Ex CW 1/12. In this it is stated, inter alia, "in the meeting Hon’ble Finance Minister clarified that dilution of shares to attract foreign investment for expansion did not allow sale of licence and, as such, these companies did their share dilution as per the corporate laws”. I further state that MHA had raised objections regarding financial transactions with Etisalat in India. In support thereof I place on record a computerized copy of document, pages 97 to 104, which I myself downloaded from the website of Etisalat and computerized copy is now Ex CW 1/13.”
45. He further deposed on 07.01.2012 as under:
"I have brought certified copies of some documents and I may be allowed to place the same on record, which were earlier referred to in my examination. A certified copy of the memorandum, running into thirteen pages, dated 21.07.2010 is Ex CW 1/14 collectively. Another certified copy of an office memorandum dated 25.03.2011, running into twelve pages, is collectively Ex CW 1/15. The certified copy of the minutes of the meeting between the then Finance Minister and the then MOC&IT dated 30.01.2008 is Ex CW 1/16. A certified copy of the order dated 03.03.2011 passed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court is Ex CW 1/17. The certified copy of the minutes of another meeting between the Hon’ble Prime Minister and the then Finance Minister and then MOC&IT, running into six pages, is collectively Ex CW 1/18. A photocopy of the seizure memo prepared by the CBI on 22.10.2009 is Ex CW 1/19, as an original copy of the same is already on record of this Court. A certified copy of the Cabinet resolution dated 31.10.2003 is Ex CW 1/20, pages, 59 to 84, and its covering note dated 03.11.2003 is Ex CW 1/21. A certified copy of the letter dated 15.01.2008 written by the then Finance Minister to the Hon’ble Prime Minister is Ex CW 1/22. Certified copy of a letter dated 21.10.2011 addressed to me by Dr. P. G. S. Rao is Ex CW 1/23. Certified copy of documents received by me under RTI Act is Ex CW 1/24. A certified copy of the communication dated 21.12.2010 received by me by the Prime Minister’s office is Ex CW1/25. Certified copy of the notes dated 06.11.2008 and 07.11.2008 of Sh. Madan Chaurasia are Ex CW 1/26 and 1/27 respectively. Certified copy of another note dated 10.11.2008 of Sh. Santok Singh is Ex CW 1/28. Photocopy of extracts of reports of committee presided over by Hon’ble Mr. Justice Shivraj V. Patil is mark F. This evidence reveals the connivance, collusion and the consent of the then Finance Minister Sh. P. Chidambram in the decisions taken by the then telecom Minister in the matter of:
A. Fixing the price of the spectrum licence; and
B. In the matter of permitting two companies, which received the licence, namely, Swan and Unitech, in dilution of shares even before roll-out of their services.
That is, the evidence brings on record the commission of offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act for which Sh. A. Raja has already been charged by this Court. I have also brought on record evidence to show that Sh. Chidambram is also guilty of breach of trust in question of national security for not disclosing that Etisalat and Telenor were black listed by Home Ministry Advisory.
I do not wish to add anything more and close my statement.”
46. I may add that the complaint did not contain any allegations against Mr. P. Chidambaram, as is clear from a bare reading of the facts, extracted above in detail. Similarly, no evidence was initially led by complainant against Mr. P. Chidambaram, when he examined himself on 07.01.2011. However, on 15.09.2011, the complainant filed an application under Section 311 CrPC for summoning/ recalling of witnesses for examination on behalf of the complainant and in that application only allegations were levelled against Mr. P. Chidambaram. The said application was allowed vide order dated 08.12.2011 and thereafter, the complainant examined himself on 17.12.2011 and 07.01.2012. He has not examined any other witness in support of the allegations in the complaint.
47. I have deliberately extracted the allegations in the complaint and evidence on oath in detail to make things clear and understandable.
48. I have heard the arguments at the bar in detail and have carefully gone through the file.
49. It is submitted by the complainant in person that UAS Licences were issued at a very low price, which were discovered in 2001. It is further submitted by him that Swan Telecom (P) Limited and Unitech Wireless (Tamil Nadu) Limited were allowed to offload their shares to Etisalat and Telenor even before roll-out. It is further submitted that the companies sold their shares at prices several times high of what they paid to the Government for licences. It is further submitted by him that as per Cabinet decision dated 31.10.2003, spectrum pricing formula was to be decided by the Finance Minister and the Telecom Minister and at the relevant time Mr. P. Chidambaram was Finance Minister and Mr. A. Raja was Minister, Telecommunications. It is further submitted that Mr. P. Chidambaram was aware of this empowerment. It is further submitted that Mr. P. Chidambaram had informed the Hon’ble Prime Minister that DoT and MoF would discuss and finalize the pricing formula for spectrum and he also wrote a letter to Mr. A. Raja in this regard and told him that after he (Mr. A. Raja) had an opportunity to examine the same, they (Mr. P. Chidambaram and Mr. A. Raja) may meet and discuss and reach some conclusion. It is further submitted that the Hon’ble Prime Minister also made a statement in Rajya Sabha about the two Ministers deciding on pricing of spectrum on the basis of Cabinet decision of 2003 and also told that they agreed to this because of legacy considerations. It is further submitted that Mr. P. Chidambaram met Mr. A. Raja on four occasions, that is, on 30.01.2008, 29.05.2008, 12.06.2008 and 04.07.2008. It is further submitted both had conveyed their agreement on the question of spectrum pricing to the Hon’ble Prime Minister and this covered all three aspects, that is, entry fee, spectrum price and annual charges. It is further submitted that not only this Mr. P. Chidambaram had stated that he was not seeking to revisit the current regime for entry fee or for revenue share. It is further submitted that Mr. P. Chidambaram was fully aware at least on 09.01.2008 as to what Mr. A. Raja was planning to do on 10.01.2008 and he was also aware of the unsuitability of fixing the price of spectrum at 2001 level.
It is further submitted that Mr. P. Chidambaram also allowed Swan Telecom (P) Limited and Unitech Wireless (Tamil Nadu) Limited to offload their shares to Etisalat and Telenor. It is further submitted that in meeting with Mr. A. Raja, he clarified that dilution of shares to attract foreign investment for expansion did not amount to sale of licence and the companies did their dilution as per corporate laws.
My attention has been invited to the various documents placed on record, including CW 1/1 to 1/28, to emphasize that all these acts were done by accused A. Raja in connivance, collusion and consent of Mr. P. Chidambaram, the then Finance Minister. It is repeatedly submitted that Mr. P. Chidambaram is guilty of commission of offences under PC Act, for which accused A. Raja is facing trial. It is further submitted that Mr. P. Chidambaram is also guilty of breach of trust on question of national security for not disclosing that Etisalat and Telenor were black-listed by the Home Ministry.
It is repeatedly submitted that there is enough incriminating material on record to warrant summoning of Mr. P. Chidambaram as an accused in the case.
He has also placed on record written submissions.
My attention has been invited to the following authorities:
(1) Anil Saran Vs. State of Bihar and another, (1995) 6 SCC 142;
(2) Chandra Deo Singh Vs. Prokash Chandra Bose alias Chabi Bose and another, AIR 1963 Supreme Court 1430;
(3) Helios and Matheson Information Technology Limited and others Vs. Rajeev Sawhney and another with Pawan Kumar Vs. Rajeev Sawhney and another, (2012) 1 SCC 699;
(4) Centre for Public Interest Litigation and others Vs. Union of India and others, (2011) 1 SCC 560;
(5) Smt. Nagawwa Vs. Veeranna Shivalingappa Konjalgi and others, AIR 1976 SC 1947;
(6) D. N. Bhattacharjee and others Vs. State of West Bengal and another, AIR 1972 SC 1607;
(7) Abhishek Agrawalla Vs. Bootmalt NV and another, Crl. Rev. P. No. 8/2010, decided on 14.02.2011;
(8) J. R. D. Tata Vs. Payal Kumar and another, 1987 Cri. L.J 447;
(9) Jia Lal Sharma, New Delhi Vs. The State and another, 1982 Cri. LJ 1913; and
(10) Nirmaljit Singh Hoon Vs. The State of West Bengal and another, AIR 1972 SC 2639.
50. The gist of the allegations as well as the evidence on record is contained on page 2 of the evidence led on 07.01.2012 by the complainant as CW1 and which is extracted as under for ready reference:
"............................................................ This evidence reveals the connivance, collusion and the consent of the then Finance Minister Sh. P. Chidambram in the decisions taken by the then telecom Minister in the matter of:
A. Fixing the price of the spectrum licence; and
B. In the matter of permitting two companies, which received the licence, namely, Swan and Unitech, in dilution of shares even before roll-out of their services.
That is, the evidence brings on record the commission of offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act for which Sh. A. Raja has already been charged by this Court. I have also brought on record evidence to show that Sh. Chidambram is also guilty of breach of trust in question of national security for not disclosing that Etisalat and Telenor were black listed by Home Ministry Advisory.............................”
51. Section 13(1)(d) and (e) of the PCA reads as under:
(1) A public servant is said to commit the offence of criminal misconduct,-
..........................................................................................................................................................................................................(d) if he,-
(i) by corrupt or illegal means, obtains for himself or for any other person any valuable thing or pecuniary advantage; or
(ii) by abusing his position as a public servant, obtains for himself or for any other person any valuable thing or pecuniary advantage; or
(iii) while holding office as a public servant, obtains for any person any valuable thing or pecuniary advantage without any public interest; or
(e) if he or any person on his behalf, is in possession or has, at any time during that period of his office, been in possession for which the public servant cannot satisfactorily account, of pecuniary resources or property disproportionate to his known sources of income.”
52. Let me make a brief survey of law relating to conspiracy.
53. In an authority reported as Kehar Singh and others Vs. State (Delhi Administration) (1998) 3 SCC 609, it was observed by the Hon'ble Supreme Court in paragraphs 275 and 276 as under:-
"275. Generally a conspiracy is hatched in secrecy and it may be difficult to adduce direct evidence of the same. The prosecution will often rely on evidence of acts of various parties to infer that they were done in reference to their common intention. The prosecution will also more often rely upon circumstantial evidence. The conspiracy can be undoubtedly proved by such evidence direct or circumstantial. But the court must enquire whether the two persons are independently pursuing the same end or they have come together in the pursuit of the unlawful object. The former does not render them conspirators but the latter does. It is, however, essential that the offence of conspiracy requires some kind of physical manifestation of agreement. The express agreement, however, need not be proved. Nor actual meeting of two persons is necessary. Nor it is necessary to prove the actual words of communication. The evidence as to transmission of thoughts sharing the unlawful design may be sufficient. Gerald Orchard of University of Canterbury, New Zealand explains the limited nature of this proposition :
Although it is not in doubt that the offence requires some physical manifestation of agreement, it is important to note the limited nature of this proposition. The law does not require that the act of agreement take any particular form and the fact of agreement may be communicated by words or conduct. Thus, it has been said that it is unnecessary to prove that the parties ''actually came together and agreed in terms'' to pursue the unlawful object : there need never have been an express verbal agreement, it being sufficient that there was ''a tacit understanding between conspirators as to what should be done''.
276. I share this opinion, but hasten to add that the relative acts or conduct of the parties must be conscientious and clear to mark their concurrence as to what should be done. The concurrence cannot be inferred by a group of irrelevant facts artfully arranged so as to give an appearance of coherence. The innocuous, innocent or inadvertent events and incidents should not enter the judicial verdict. We must thus be strictly on our guard.”
54. In an another authority reported as State Vs. Nalini and others (1999) 5 SCC 253, it was observed by the Hon'ble Supreme Court in paragraph 583 as under:-
"Some of the broad principles governing the law of conspiracy may be summarized though, as the name implies, a summary cannot be exhaustive of the principles.
1. Under Section 120-A IPC offence of criminal conspiracy is committed when two or more persons agree to do or cause to be done an illegal act or legal act by illegal means. When it is a legal act by illegal means overt act is necessary. Offence of criminal conspiracy is an exception to the general law where intent alone does not constitute crime. It is intention to commit crime and joining hands with persons having the same intention. Not only the intention but there has to be agreement to carry out the object of the intention, which is an offence. The question for consideration in a case is did all the accused have the intention and did they agree that the crime be committed. It would not be enough for the offence of conspiracy when some of the accuse merely entertained a wish, howsoever, it may be, that offence be committed.
2. Acts subsequent to the achieving of the object of conspiracy may tend to prove that a particular accused was party to the conspiracy. Once the object of conspiracy has been achieved, any subsequent act, which may be unlawful, would not make the accused a part of the conspiracy like giving shelter to an absconder.
3. Conspiracy is hatched in private or secrecy. It is rarely possible to establish a conspiracy by direct evidence. Usually, both the existence of the conspiracy and its objects have to be inferred from the circumstances and the conduct of the accused.
4. Conspirators may for example, be enrolled in a chain – A enrolling B, B enrolling C, and so on; and all will be members of a single conspiracy if they so intend and agree, even though each member knows only the person who enrolled him and the person whom he enrols. There may be a kind of umbrella-spoke enrolment, where a single person at the centre does the enrolling and all the other members are unknown to each other, though they know that there are to be other members. These are theories and in practice it may be difficult to tell which conspiracy in a particular case falls into which category. It may however, even overlap. But then there has to be present mutual interest. Persons may be members of single conspiracy even though each is ignorant of the identity of many others who may have diverse roles to play. It is not a part of the crime of conspiracy that all the conspirators need to agree to play the same or an active role.
5. When two or more persons agree to commit a crime of conspiracy, then regardless of making or considering any plans for its commission, and despite the fact that no step is taken by any such person to carry out their common purpose, a crime is committed by each and every one who joins in the agreement. There has thus to be two conspirators and there may be more than that. To prove the charge of conspiracy it is not necessary that intended crime was committed or not. If committed it may further help prosecution to prove the charge of conspiracy.
6. It is not necessary that all conspirators should agree to the common purpose at the same time. They may join with other conspirators at any time before the consummation of the intended objective, and all are equally responsible. What part each conspirator is to play may not be known to everyone or the fact as to when a conspirator joined the conspiracy and when he left.
7. A charge of conspiracy may prejudice the accused because it forces them into a joint trial and the court may consider the entire mass of evidence against very accused. Prosecution has to produce evidence not only to show that each of the accused has knowledge of the object of conspiracy but also of the agreement. In the charge of conspiracy the court has to guard itself against the danger of unfairness to the accused. Introduction of evidence against some may result in the conviction of all which is to be avoided. By means of evidence in conspiracy, which is otherwise inadmissible in the trial of any other substantive offence prosecution tries to implicate the accused not only in the conspiracy itself but also in the substantive crime of the alleged conspirators. There is always difficulty in tracing the precise contribution of each member of the conspiracy but then there has to be cogent and convincing evidence against each one of the accused charged with the offence of conspiracy. As observed by Judge Learned Hand ''this distinction is important today when many prosecutors seek to sweep within the dragnet of conspiracy all those who have been associated in any degree whatever with the main offenders''.
8. As stated above it is the unlawful agreement and not its accomplishment, which is the gist or essence of the crime of conspiracy. Offence of criminal conspiracy is complete even though there is no agreement as to the means by which the purpose is to be accomplished. It is the unlawful agreement which is the gravamen of the crime of conspiracy. The unlawful agreement which amounts to a conspiracy need not be formal or express, but may be inherent in and inferred from the circumstances, especially declarations, acts and conduct of the conspirators. The agreement need not be entered into by all the parties to it at the same time, but may be reached by successive actions evidencing their joining of the conspiracy.
9. It has been said that a criminal conspiracy is a partnership in crime, and that there is in each conspiracy a joint or mutual agency for the prosecution of a common plan. Thus, if two or more persons enter into a conspiracy, any act done by any of them pursuant to the agreement is, in contemplation of law, the act of each of them and they are jointly responsible therefor. This means that everything said, written or done by any of the conspirators in execution or furtherance of the common purpose is deemed to have been said, done or written by each of them. And this joint responsibility extends not only to what is done by any of the conspirators pursuant to the original agreement but also to collateral acts incidental to and growing out of the original purpose. A conspirator is not responsible, however, for acts done by a co-conspirator after termination of the conspiracy. The joinder of a conspiracy by a new member does not create a new conspiracy nor does it change the status of the other conspirators, and the mere fact that conspirators individually or in groups perform different tasks to a common end does not split up a conspiracy into several different conspiracies.
10. A man join a conspiracy by word or by deed. However, criminal responsibility for a conspiracy requires more than a merely passive attitude towards an existing conspiracy. One who commits an overt act with knowledge of the conspiracy is guilty. And one who tacitly consents to the object of a conspiracy and goes along with other conspirators, actually standing by while the others put the conspiracy into effect, is guilty though he intends to take no active part in the crime.
55. Furthermore, in an authority reported as State (NCT of Delhi) Vs. Navjot Sandhu alias Afsan Guru, (2005) 11 SCC 600, it was observed by the Hon’ble Supreme Court in paras 98 to 101, as under:
"98. As pointed out by Fazal Ali, J., in V. C. Shukla v. State (Delhi Admn) : (SCC pp. 669-70, para 8)
"In most cases it will be difficult to get direct evidence of an agreement to conspire but a conspiracy can be inferred even from circumstances giving rise to a conclusive or irresistible inference of an agreement between two or more persons to commit an offence.”
In this context, the observations in the case of Noor Mohammad Mohd. Yusuf Momain v. State of Maharashtra are worth noting : (SCC pp.669-700, para 7)
"In most cases proof of conspiracy is largely inferential though the inference must be founded on solid facts. Surrounding circumstances and antecedent and subsequent conduct, among other factors, constitute relevant material."
99. A few bits here and a few bits there on which the prosecution relies cannot be held to be adequate for connecting the accused in the offence of criminal conspiracy. The circumstances before, during and after the occurrence can be proved to decide about the complicity of the accused. (Vide Esher Singh v. State of AP.)
100. Lord Bridge in R. v. Anderson aptly said that the evidence from which a jury may infer a criminal conspiracy is almost invariably to be found in the conduct of the parties. In Daniel Youth v. R. the Privy Council warned that in a joint trial case must be taken to separate the admissible evidence against each accused and the judicial mind should not be allowed to be influenced by evidence admissible only against other. "A co-defendant in a conspiracy trial", observed Jackson, J, (US p.454), "occupies an uneasy seat" and "it is difficult for the individual to make his own case stand on its own merits in the minds of jurors who are ready to believe that birds of a feather are flocked together". (Vide Alvin Krulewitch v. United States of America.)
In Nalini case Wadhwa, J. pointed out, at p. 517 of SCC, the need to guard against prejudice being caused to the accused on account of joint trial with other conspirators. The learned Judge observed that: (SCC p. 517, para 583)
"There is always difficulty in tracing the precise contribution of each member of the conspiracy but then there has to be cogent and convincing evidence against each one of the accused charged with the offence of conspiracy."
The pertinent observation of Judge Hand in U.S. v. Falcone was referred to: (SCC p. 511, para 572)
"The distinction is especially important today when so many prosecutors seek to sweep within the dragnet of conspiracy all those who have been associated in any degree whatever with the main offenders."
At para 518, Wadhwa, J., pointed out that the criminal responsibility for a conspiracy requires more than a merely passive attitude towards an existing conspiracy. The learned Judge then set out the legal position regarding the criminal liability of the persons accused of the conspiracy as follows: (SCC p. 518, para 583)
"One who commits an overt act with knowledge of the conspiracy is guilty. And one who tacitly consents to the object of a conspiracy and goes along with other conspirators, actually standing by while the others put the conspiracy into effect, is guilty though he intends to take no active part in the crime."
101. One more principle which deserves notice is that the cumulative effect of the proved circumstances should be taken into account in determining the guilt of the accused rather than adopting an isolated approach to each of the circumstances. Of course, each one of the circumstances should be proved beyond reasonable doubt. Lastly, in regard to the appreciation of evidence relating to the conspiracy, the Court must take care to see that the acts or conduct of the parties must be conscious and clear enough to infer their concurrence as to the common design and its execution. K. J. Shetty, J., pointed out in Kehar Singh case that : (SCC p. 773, para 276)
The innocuous, innocent or inadvertent events and incidents should not enter the judicial verdict."
56. In another case reported as R. Venkatakrishnan Vs. Central Bureau of Investigation, AIR 2010 SC 1812, law relating to acts or things which were inherently unlawful was stated in paragraph 86 as under:-
''In some case, intent of unlawful use being made of the goods or services in question may be inferred from the knowledge itself. This Court is State of Maharashtra v. Som Nath Thapa opined that it is not necessary for the prosecution to establish that a particular unlawful use was intended, so long as the goods or services in question could not be put to any lawful use, stating:
''..............to establish a charge of conspiracy knowledge about indulgence in either an illegal act or a legal act by illegal means is necessary. In some cases, intent of unlawful use being made of the goods or services in question may be inferred from the knowledge itself. This apart, the prosecution has not to establish that a particular unlawful use was intended, so long as the goods or services in question could not be put to any lawful use. Finally, when the ultimate offence consists of a chain of actions, it would not be necessary for the prosecution to establish, to bring home the charge of conspiracy, that each of the conspirators had the knowledge of what the collaborator would do, so long as it is known that the collaborator would put the goods or service to an unlawful use.''
57. What is misconduct? This point was reiterated by the Hon'ble Supreme Court in an authority reported as State of Madhya Pradesh Vs. Sheetla Sahai and others, (2009) 8 SCC 617, in paragraph 46 as under:-
''10. In State of Punjab v. Ram Singh it was stated:
'5. Misconduct has been defined in Black's Law Dictionary, 6th Edn., at p. 999, thus:
''Misconduct.-A transgression of some established and definite rule of action, a forbidden act, a dereliction from duty, unlawful behavior, willful in character improper or wrong behavior; its synonyms are misdemeanor, misdeed, misbehavior, delinquency, impropriety, mismanagement, offence, but not negligence or carelessness.''
Misconduct in office has been defined as:
''Misconduct in office- Any unlawful behavior by a public officer in relation to the duties of his office, willful in character. Term embraces acts which the office holder had no right to perform, acts performed improperly, and failure to act in the fact of an affirmative duty to act.''
11. In P. Ramanatha Aiyar's Law Lexicon, 3rd Edn., at p. 3027, the term 'misconduct' has been defined as under:
'Misconduct.-The term ''misconduct'' implies a wrongful intention, and not a mere error of judgment.
MISCONDUCT is not necessarily the same thing as conduct involving moral turpitude.
The word ''misconduct'' is a relative term, and has to be construed with reference to the subject-matter and the context wherein the term occurs, having regard to the scope of the Act or statute which is being, construed. ''Misconduct'' literally means wrong conduct or improper conduct.'
58. To make conduct, criminal misconduct within the meaning of PC Act, it was observed in paragraphs 35 and 47 as under:-
''35. Section 13 of the Act provides for criminal misconduct by a public servant. Such an offence of criminal misconduct by a public servant can be said to have been committed if in terms of Sections 13(1)(d)(ii)-(iii) a public servant abuses its position and obtains for himself or for any other person any valuable thing or pecuniary advantage; or while holding office as a public servant, obtains for any person any valuable thing or pecuniary advantage without any public interest. Sub-section (2) of Section 13 provides that any public servant who commits criminal misconduct shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall be not less than one year but which may extend to seven years and shall also be liable to fine.
47. Even under the Act, an offence cannot be said to have been committed only because the public servant has obtained either for himself or for any other person any pecuniary advantage. He must do so by abusing his position as a public servant or holding office as a public servant. In the latter category of cases, absence of any public interest is a sine qua non. The materials brought on record do not suggest in any manner whatsoever that Respondents 1 to 7 either had abused position or had obtained pecuniary advantage for Respondents 8, 9, and 10, which was without any public interest.''
(All underlinings by me for supplying emphasis).
59. A bare perusal of the allegations and the evidence, led in support thereof, reveals that neither are there any allegations nor is evidence against Mr. P. Chidambaram to the effect that he played any role in the subversion of the process of issuance of letters of intent (LOI), UAS Licences and allocation of spectrum in the years 2007-08. The subversion of the process of issuance of letters of intent, UAS Licences and allocation of spectrum included arbitrary fixation of the cut-off date, filing and procuring of applications for UAS Licences on behalf of ineligible companies, violation of first-come first-served policy in the issuance of LOIs, UAS Licences and allocation of spectrum and payment and receipt of bribe. All these incriminating acts were allegedly done by the Minister/ officials of Department of Telecommunications, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India and by private persons.
60. Now the question arises as to what is the role of Mr. P. Chidambaram. The acts attributed to him by the complainant are, his complicity in fixing the price of the spectrum licence at 2001 level and permitting two companies, which received the licence, namely, Swan and Unitech, to dilute their shares even before roll-out of their services.
61. However, both of these acts, attributed to him, are not per se illegal or violative of any law. He agreed with Mr. A. Raja not to revise or revisit the entry fee or spectrum charge as discovered in 2001. Non-revision of prices is not an illegal act by itself. The competent authority is always at liberty to decide in its discretion to not to revise the prices or fee for any goods or services. The same entry fee/ spectrum charges continued even after 2007-08. Same is the case with dilution of equity by a company. It is not per se illegal nor was it prohibited at the relevant time. However, such acts may acquire criminal colour/ overtones when done with criminal intent.
62. The case of the complainant is that Mr. P. Chidambaram consented to non-revision of entry fee/ spectrum charges and dilution of equity by the companies as he was in criminal conspiracy with A. Raja. It is further his case that dilution of equity was a ruse to transfer UAS Licence at a premium and thereby earn undeserved profit. In this regard, he has invited my attention to the charges framed against accused A. Raja and other accused, wherein these two facts have also been mentioned.
63. However, I may add that these two acts find mention in the charge for the reason that these acts were accompanied by further acts of subverting the established policy and procedure for grant of UAS Licences and the payment and receipt of bribe by other accused, who stand charged and are facing trial.
64. The crucial questions are:
(i) Whether entry fee for the UAS Licences and the price of spectrum was jointly determined by Mr. A. Raja and Mr. P. Chidambaram?
(ii) Whether they have deliberately fixed a low entry fee, discovered in 2001 auction, for spectrum licences?
(iii) Whether Mr. P. Chidambaram deliberately allowed dilution of equity by the two companies, that is, Swan Telecom (P) Limited and Unitech Wireless (Tamil Nadu) Limited?
(iv) If so, whether these facts prima facie show criminal culpability of Mr. P. Chidamabaram also alongwith Mr. A. Raja?
(v) Whether there is any material on record to show criminal culpability of Mr. P. Chidambaram?
65. In a case of criminal conspiracy, the Court has to see whether two persons are independently pursuing the same end or they are acting together in pursuit of an unlawful act. One may be acting innocently and other may be actuated by criminal intention. Innocuous, inadvertent or innocent acts do not make one party to the conspiracy.
66. As per Cabinet note dated 31.10.2003, the decision regarding spectrum pricing was to be taken by Finance Minister and MOC&IT and after this decision was taken, Mr. P. Chidambaram agreed that it would be the price as discovered in the year 2001 and also told Mr. A. Raja that there is no need to revisit the same. This decision was subsequently conveyed to the Hon’ble Prime Minister also. To that extent, there is material on record.
67. However, there is no material on record to show that Mr. P. Chidambaram was acting malafide in fixing the price of spectrum at the 2001 level or in permitting dilution of equity by the two companies. These two acts are not per se illegal and there is no further material on record to show any other incriminating act on the part of Mr. P. Chidambaram. A decision taken by a public servant does not become criminal for simple reason that it has caused loss to the public exchequer or resulted in pecuniary advantage to others. Merely attending meetings and taking decisions therein is not a criminal act. It must have the taint of use of corrupt or illegal means or abuse of his official position by public servant for obtaining pecuniary advantage by him for himself or for any other person or obtaining of pecuniary advantage by him without any public interest. There is no material on record to suggest that Mr. Chidambaram was acting with such corrupt or illegal motives or was in abuse of his official position, while consenting to the two decisions. There is no evidence that he obtained any pecuniary advantage without any public interest. I may add that there is such incriminating material against other accused persons, who stand charged and are facing trial.
68. There is no evidence on record to suggest that there was an agreement between him and Mr. A. Raja to subvert telecom policy and obtain pecuniary advantage for himself or for any other person. There is no evidence of any substantive act being committed by him. A bit of evidence here and a bit there does not constitute prima facie evidence for showing prima facie existence of a criminal conspiracy. Anybody and everybody associated with a decision in any degree cannot be roped as an accused. The role played by the decision maker, circumstances in which the decision was taken and the intention of the decision maker are the relevant facts. Intention is to be inferred from the facts and circumstances of the case. One cannot be held guilty merely by association with a decision and a decision by itself does not indicate criminality. There must be something more than mere association. Innocent and innocuous acts done in association with others do not make one a partner in crime, unless there is material to indicate otherwise, which is lacking in this case.
69. In the end, Mr. P. Chidambaram was party to only two decisions, that is, keeping the spectrum prices at 2001 level and dilution of equity by the two companies. These two acts are not per se criminal. In the absence of any other incriminating act on his part, it cannot be said that he was prima facie party to the criminal conspiracy. There is no evidence on record that he was acting in pursuit to the criminal conspiracy, while being party to the two decisions regarding non-revision of the spectrum pricing and dilution of equity by the two companies.
70. Accordingly, I do not find any sufficient ground for proceeding against Mr. P. Chidambaram. The plea is without any merit and the same is dismissed.
Announced in open Court,
today on February 04, 2012. (O. P. SAINI)
Spl. Judge/ CBI(04)(2G Spectrum Cases)/ND