Citing statistics of tele-density, which has gone up from 7% in March 2004 to 66% in December 2010, prime minister Manmohan Singh said the policy has paid "rich dividends"
New Delhi: Notwithstanding with controversies surrounding the second generation (2G) spectrum allocation, prime minister Manmohan Singh today defended the telecom policy in place but admitted that implementation may be faulty, reports PTI.
Citing statistics of tele-density, which has gone up from 7% in March 2004 to 66% in December 2010, Mr Singh said the policy has paid "rich dividends".
Asserting that auction for 2G spectrum was not considered in 2007 as the concerned ministry had opposed it and was supported by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI), he said, "I felt that for level playing field, it was entirely appropriate that we should continue on the path which we had followed until 2007.
"Then subsequently it turned out to be that while the policy was sound, the way it was implemented, I think, gave rise to problems," Mr Singh said in Lok Sabha replying to motion of thanks to the president for her address to Parliament.
He said all the problems relating to the 2G spectrum allocation will be looked into by the Joint Parliamentary Committee (JPC) besides Public Account Committee (PAC) and if there are any criminal aspects, they are being looked into by the CBI.
"Our government will fully cooperate with all these agencies and with all these entities to ensure that truth comes out and the guilty are punished," he said.
The government auditor Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has quantified revenue loss of over Rs1.76 lakh crore to the exchequer due to sale of 2G airwaves in 2008 by the former telecom minister A Raja, who was arrested by the CBI earlier this month amid charges of his alleged involvement in manipulating the policy to favour select industrial houses.
As many as 122 licences were issued in January 2008 and most of the firms are yet to roll out mandatory services as stipulated in the licence's terms and conditions.
The telecom ministry has, meanwhile, issued show cause notices to telecom firms on charges of missing roll out obligations and also for suppressing information at the time of applying for licences in 2007.
Even the CAG had pointed out that most of the 122 licences were ineligible for getting licences and had asked the government to cancel these contracts.
The prime minister said, "People talk of scams and if there is a scam, it must be dealt with. The law of the land must punish the wrong doers but we must not overlook also the fact of this tremendous growth of the telecom sector which has taken place as a result of sound policies pursued by our government."
Minister of state for corporate affairs RPN Singh informed Parliament that the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO), along with the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate, was still probing diversion of funds and role of individual directors in the scam that came to light in January 2009
New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) will file its final charge-sheet on Rs14,000-crore Satyam fraud after receiving responses to the Letters of Rogatory (LoRs) seeking information in this regard from six countries, Parliament was informed today.
The CBI is reported to have sent LoRs-a formal request sent from the court of one country to a foreign court for judicial assistance-to six countries: the USA, the UK, Belgium, British Virgin Islands, Mauritius and Singapore, reports PTI.
"CBI has issued Letters of Rogatory to six countries. Since charge-sheets will be filed after getting the information from these countries, no time limit can be indicated," minister of state for corporate affairs RPN Singh said in a written reply in Lok Sabha.
Mr Singh was replying to a question on by when the CBI was expected to file final charge-sheets on the Satyam scam.
Mr Singh further informed Parliament that the Serious Fraud Investigation Office (SFIO), along with the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate, was still probing diversion of funds and role of individual directors in the scam that came to light in January 2009.
He added that the accounting regulator ICAI is yet to punish the six CAs involved in the scam and disciplinary proceedings are underway.
In January 2009, Satyam founder and former chairman B Ramalinga Raju had confessed of having cooked the books of the company for several years. Mr Raju is at present behind the bars and cases relating the scam are being tried in a special court in Hyderabad.
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