Congress leader and senior advocate Kapil Sibal on Thursday said the acquittal of all the accused in the 2G scam vindicated then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the UPA’s stand that there was no scam in the allocation of spectrum and licences to telecom companies.
“Manmohan Singh and the UPA government stand vindicated today,” Sibal said. He was speaking to reporters after a special court here acquitted former Telecom Minister A. Raja and DMK MP Kanimozhi and others accused in the 2008 2G spectrum allocation scam case.
Sibal sought an apology from Vinod Rai who as then Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) had in his telecom audit report estimated a massive presumptive loss of Rs 1.76 lakh crore to the state exchequer by allocating 2G spectrum licences at allegedly throwaway prices.
The Congress leader said Rai must also apologise to the nation “as the telecom industry is in dire straits today and thanks to him and the then opposition (BJP)”.
Sibal, who succeeded Raja after the DMK leader was forced to resign, also sought an apology from the BJP that had accused the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government of shielding the corrupt.
“They (the BJP) must apologise as they attacked the (then) Prime Minister, and the Congress in the Lok Sabha as well as in Rajya Sabha. Today’s verdict clears the government position as vindicated.”
Sibal had maintained during his term as Telecom Minister that there was zero loss to the exchequer and no wrong had taken place in the allocation of licences.
He repeated the argument, saying: “I told the people of this that nothing wrong that has happened. And today my position, the government’s position and the then Prime Minister’s position has been vindicated.”
The alleged scam in the issuance of licences and allocation of 2G spectrum by the Department of Telecom occurred during the Congress-led UPA government’s first tenure in 2008 but was widely reported in 2010 following a report by then Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) Vinod Rai.