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Govt orders probe into “Radia tapes” leak

New Delhi: The government today ordered a probe into the leaks of the recorded tapes containing conversations between corporate lobbyist Nira Radia, her clients and certain journalists among others, reports PTI.

The order to initiate a probe into the matter comes on a day when Tata group chief Ratan Tata approached the Supreme Court seeking action against those involved in the leakage of the tapes containing his conversation with Ms Radia.

Home ministry sources said the probe would be conducted by the Intelligence Bureau and the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) and will focus on finding out who leaked it and how.

Incidentally, the CBDT had conducted the phone tappings over a period of time for which the sanction was given by the home ministry.

The secret tapes had come into the public domain recently after certain media groups published transcripts of the same.

As per the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which is probing the alleged second generation (2G) spectrum scam, it was examining transcripts relating to 5,000 calls.

Nearly 104 tapping records are out in the market, sources said.

Mr Tata, in the petition today, has contended that the leakage of the tapes have infringed upon his fundamental Right to Life, which includes right to privacy.

Mr Tata has made the central government a party in his petition.

Some of the conversation between Mr Tata and Ms Radia, whose public relations firms were engaged by the group, relate to personal details that could no way be part of investigation, Mr Tata is expected to argue in the petition.

The industrialist has sought a direction for fixing the responsibility for the alleged leakage of the tapes.

Mr Tata has made the Union home secretary, CBI, the income tax department, Department of Telecommunication and Department of Information Technology as respondents in the petition.


CCI probing 11 complaints against realty firms

New Delhi: Close on heels of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) busting a major housing finance racket involving officials from bank and realty firms, competition watchdog Competition Commission of India (CCI) today said it is also examining 11 complaints against a few real estate companies pertaining to anti-competitive practices, reports PTI.

"I can only say that of the 137 cases that we are handling, 11 pertain to the real estate sector," Competition Commission of India chairman Dhanendra Kumar told reporters on the sidelines of an Assocham event here, without disclosing the names of the companies.

According to sources, of the 11 such cases, at least five-six complaints were against one realty major for its various housing projects.

CCI looks into violation of anti-competitive practices and abuse of dominance by corporates.

Mr Kumar said complaints have been received under Sections 3 and 4 of the Competition Act, 2002 that deal with anti-competitive agreements and abuse of dominant position, respectively.

He said this while responding to a query if the CCI plans to look into the companies involved in the housing finance scam, which led to the arrest of LIC Housing Finance chairman Ramachandran Nair and seven senior bank officials.

Last week, the CBI had booked the officials for allegedly colluding with loan arranger firm Money Matters and overlooking regulatory guidelines for granting approvals, for their individual monetary gains.

The agency has also sought explanation from private companies which benefited from an alleged cross-country scam.

D B Realty, Adani and a few other companies have already sent their representatives with relevant documents today, according to a report.

The beneficiary companies include Lavasa, Pashmina, Mantri Realty, Sigrun Ltd, Entertainment World, Indore City Treasures, Ashapura Minechem, BGR Energy, OPG Group, Adani, JP Hydro, JSW Power, Religare, Pantaloon and MTECH, among others.


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