Those were the heydays of Indian telecom when spotting it as a goldmine, several corporate companies rushed for a stake in the sector.
In October 2007, during the pre-2G spectrum auctions, stories unfolded that Sanchar Bhawan is loaded with 2G licence applications. At that point, nobody was ever aware that this spectrum auctions would bereft the country of Rs 1.76 lakh crore.
The then Telecom Minister A Raja allegedly breached all rules pertaining to spectrum auctions as he kept the entry fee at as low as Rs 1,651 crore and 2G licenses were awarded at 2001 prices. Undue favors were given to companies like Swan and Uninor, leading to a big Rs 1.76 lakh crore hole in the exchequer’s pocket.
Today, the time has arrived when former telecom minister A Raja’s fate would be sealed when a court in Delhi will decide the verdict later today.
2G scam is dubbed as the biggest setback in the telecom history. It opened up a pandora’s box as it revealed the involvement of political leaders, bureaucrats, media in 2G corruption.
As a result of policy violations, the Supreme Court had earlier cancelled all the 122 licenses issued by Raja.
Besides Raja, M Kanimozhi, the daughter of DMK chief M Karunanidhi, is also an accused in the case.