2G case: Supreme Court to hear petitions against Chidambaram

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The Supreme Court on Wednesday is scheduled to hear two petitions that ask for a probe into Union Home Minister P Chidambaram's alleged role in the telecom scam...

The Supreme Court on Wednesday is scheduled to hear two petitions that ask for a probe into Union Home Minister P Chidambaram's alleged role in the telecom scam.

Of these petitions, one by Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy says that Chidambaram must be held responsible for allowing the telecom scam while he was Finance Minister. Earlier a special CBI court had rejected Swamy's plea and he later filed appeal to the Supreme Court against this verdict.

P. Chidambaram was the Finance Minister in 2008 when former telecom minister A Raja, presently in jail, allegedly gifted mobile network licenses and frequency to ineligible companies.

Swamy pleads that Chidambaram was fully aware of Raja's actions. On matters like the pricing of spectrum, he should have intervened to protect the country's interests, Swamy adds.

Meanwhile, the second petition has been filed by the Centre for Public Interest Litigation, an NGO. Filing the petition, lawyer-activist Prashant Bhushan alleges that Chidambaram as Finance Minister overruled his officers who favoured the auction of spectrum.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday examined the petitions of the central government, former communications minister A. Raja and seven telecom companies seeking a review of its verdict quashing 122 licences for 2G mobile phone services issued in 2008.

Raja, in his review petition, had contended that "the judgment of this court, inasmuch as it condemns the actions and inactions of the petitioner as minister of communication and information technology in numerous places, is in violation of the basic principles of fair play and justice and of affording a person an opportunity of being heard before he is condemned".

Raja said the court made observations against him without granting him the opportunity of being heard.