Companies & Sectors
Telcos to be chargesheeted for excess spectrum during NDA

The apex court directed the CBI to go by the view of its Director in taking further action on the allocation of spectrum between 2001-03 when Pramod Mahajan was the Telecom Minister

 
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday directed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to go ahead with its outgoing Director AP Singh's view on the prosecution of telecom companies, their officials and public servants on the allocation of excess 2G spectrum during the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) regime when late Pramod Mahajan was the Telecom Minister, reports PTI.
 
The apex court paved the way for the agency to file the chargesheet in the case in which an FIR was lodged against the then Telecom Secretary Shyamal Ghosh and Deputy Director General (Value Added Services) JR Gupta and unnamed officials of Bharti Cellular (now known as Bharti Airtel), and Hutchinson Max and Sterling Cellular (now known as Vodafone Essar) in November 2011.
 
The delay in filing the chargesgeet was due to difference of opinion between the CBI Director, who was of the view that those named in the FIR should be prosecuted and the agency's Director (Prosecution) disagreeing with him.
 
The matter was referred to the Attorney General GE Vahanvati for his opinion and he gave the view to the CBI which was placed in a sealed cover before a bench comprising justices GS Singhvi and KS Radhakrishnan.
 
After perusing the report, the bench directed the CBI to go by the view of its Director in taking further action on the allocation of spectrum between 2001-03 when Mahajan was the Telecom Minister.
 
"We are of the opinion that CBI will take action in accordance with the view expressed by CBI Director against some persons and companies," the bench said.
 
The court said the retirement of present Director will not come in the way and the agency will proceed with his view as he is the highest functionary in the CBI and he has taken a particular view.
 
In the earlier hearing, the bench had questioned why the CBI was seeking opinion of the Attorney General on the issue when the Government has appointed Special Public Prosecutor (SPP) for the prosecution of the cases arising out of the investigation in the 2G spectrum scam.
 
The CBI in its progress report into the probe of the spectrum allocation during Mahajan's tenure had stated that after Director (Prosecution) in the CBI disagreed with the investigators on filing the charge sheet against the accused named in the FIR, the matter was referred to the AG for his opinion.
 
Advocate Prashant Bhushan, who was appearing for NGO, Centre for Public Interest Litigation (CPIL), had said "difference of opinion between the two wings of CBI has become a pattern" and it is all to protect the Chairman of Bharti Group, Sunil Mittal.
 
The case was registered under 120-B (criminal conspiracy) and various sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act.
 
"The then Minister for Telecom and Communication (Pramod Mahajan) has been excluded since he expired," CBI had said but alleged he was a part of a criminal conspiracy to allocate the additional spectrum in a "hurried" manner.
 

User

RTI Judgement Series: You can get information on sub-judice matters under RTI

Under the RTI Act, disclosing information on matters which are sub-judice does not constitute contempt of court, unless there is a specific order forbidding its disclosure. This is the fourth in a series of important judgements given by Shailesh Gandhi, former CIC, that can be used or quoted in an RTI application 

 
The public information officer (PIO) cannot deny information on matters which are sub-judice by citing Section 8(1)(e) of the Right to Information (RTI) Act, unless there is a specific order forbidding the disclosure, ruled the Central Information Commission. While giving this important judgement, Shailesh Gandhi, former Central Information Commissioner, also disagreed with a previous decision of the Commission.
 
“The appellate authority had claimed exemption under Section 8 (1)(e), but the PIO has given no reason to justify how this can apply. The only exemption of Section 8 (1) which might remotely apply is Section 8 (1)(b) which states, ‘information which has been expressly forbidden to be published by any court of law or tribunal or the disclosure of which may constitute contempt of court;’ can be denied. This clause does not cover sub-judice matters, and unless an exemption is specifically mentioned, information cannot be denied,” the Commission said in its order issued on 18 February 2009.
 
Delhi resident Ashwani Kumar Goel sought information regarding the creation of the posts of additional senior public prosecutors, vacancies and their ad-hoc promotions and subsequent regularizations during the period 1994 to 2005, from the government of NCT of Delhi. The PIO denied the information saying that the matter is sub-judice in the Delhi High Court.
 
The First Appellate Authority (FAA), while noting that the applicant (Mr Goel) is seeking information for use in the court case to promote his professional and private interests, asked him to obtain the information from Delhi High Court, since the matter was sub-judice. “Further, it was also informed that no large public interest is served from the information as asked by the appellant and can be denied under section 8(1) (e) of RTI Act,” the FAA said in its order.
 
Dissatisfied with the answers from both the PIO and the FAA, Mr Goel then approached the CIC. During the hearing on 18 February 2009, representative of the PIO cited an earlier decision (No. CIC/MA/A/2005/00001) given by the CIC on 14 March 2006. The CIC decision states that “The matter is sub-judice. The appellate authority has correctly advised that information in question could be obtained through the court, which is examining the matter.”
 
After hearing both the sides, Mr Gandhi, in an order said, “I respectfully have to disagree with the earlier decision cited by the appellant since it is per incuriam. This Commission rules that a matter being subjudice cannot be used as a reason for denying information under the Right to Information Act.” 
 
CENTRAL INFORMATION COMMISSION
 
Decision No. CIC /WB/A/2008/00838/1777
 
Appeal No. CIC/WB/A/2008/00838/
 
Appellant                                :         Ashwani Kumar Goel,
                                                                  G-6, Model Town-III,
                                                                  Delhi-110009.
         
Respondent 1                           :      RN Sharma,
                                                                  Joint Secretary (Home) & PIO,
                                                                  Govt. of NCT of Delhi.
                                                                  Office of the Registrar Coop. Societies,
                                                                  Parliament Street, New Delhi.
 

User

COMMENTS

praveen sakhuja

4 years ago

What Ghandi says is correct BUT who will correct the other IC's. Those support blindly the respondents indirectly Public Authorities. CAN ANY ONE PROVIDE SOLUTION TO IT kindly inform [email protected]

REPLY

Ashok Das

In Reply to praveen sakhuja 4 years ago

I respectfully disagree to your generalized view. Opinion on who is correct may vary. Declaring that all other CICs are biased compared to Gandhi is not a good idea. It shows bias. Shri Shailesh Gandhi is known to have a particular bias too. Balance is very very important in delivering justice. Like you have rightly said, a quick and good solution is still pending for ordinary citizens. At least we have RTI now, thanks to several people including Shailesh Gandhi. Lets hope we are able to make it better and better with time. Thanks.

praveen sakhuja

4 years ago

2nd - My experience says it is IC who do not take care of the decision/order of the colleague in a right spirit. those try to shield the respondents of their choice with giving a twist to the past decision/order with new mythology. IC-SS is glaring example to it.

praveen sakhuja

4 years ago

It is the fate of the applicant as to which IC's is dealing with the appeal. Ic's has full discretion to decide fate of the applicant. he/she may even reverse his observations while dictating the decision/order delivered during hearing proceedings,

Ashok Das

4 years ago

Respected Sir, This is quite confusing. Can someone help understand this? One CIC order says that “The matter is sub-judice. The appellate authority has correctly advised that information in question could be obtained through the court, which is examining the matter.” and another CIC order states that "This Commission rules that a matter being subjudice cannot be used as a reason for denying information under the Right to Information Act.” How is the confusion to be cleared as to what is correct? Who decides? Thank you.

BSE Sensex, Nifty in a strong uptrend: Thursday Closing Report

But buying only on declines would be the right strategy 

 
Resuming after a day’s break, the Indian market was in the positive for the entire session and closed in the green for the third day in a row. The end of the stalemate in Parliament and Goldman Sachs’ upgrade of India to ‘overweight’ from ‘market-weight’ also supported the gains. In our previous closing report, we had mentioned that the Nifty should continue to register a higher high and a higher low to maintain the upmove. For the third trading day today the Nifty managed to make a higher high and a higher low and closed at it highest points since 27 April 2011. At present the index is in a strong uptrend and a close below any previous day’s low may be a sign of reversal. The National Stock Exchange (NSE) saw a high volume of 111.71 crore shares on account of the November F&O contract expiry and an advance decline ratio of 1018:709.
 
The Indian market, which opened after a day’s holiday, started in the green tracking firm global cues and hopes that the logjam in Parliament will end with the Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar allowing a discussion that involves voting on the issue of allowing FDI in multi-brand retail. 
 
The Nifty opened 10 points higher at 5,737 and the Sensex resumed trade at 18,874, up 32 points over its previous close. The opening figure on the Sensex was its intraday low while the Nifty’s low was at 5,736. 
 
An upgrade of India to ‘overweight’ from ‘market-weight’ by global investment bank Goldman Sachs boosted sentiment in the domestic market today. The benchmarks gained strength as trade progressed on buying interest in consumer durables, fast moving consumer goods, realty and auto sectors.
 
A positive opening of the European markets boosted domestic investor sentiment in the second half of the trading session. The market continued to trade firm in the late session with the benchmarks hitting their highs in the last hour. At this point, the Nifty rose to 5,834 and the Sensex jumped to 19,205.
 
A minor bout of profit towards the end of the session resulted in the market closing off the highs. The Nifty gained 98 points to 5,825 and the Sensex jumped 329 points to settle above the 19,100 mark at 19,171.
 
Although the broader indices settled higher, they lagged the Sensex. The BSE Mid-cap index surged 1.26% and the BSE Small-cap index rose 0.45%.
 
 
With the exception of the BSE IT (down 0.36%) and BSE TECk (down 0.05%), all other sectoral gauges closed up. The top gainers were BSE Realty (up 3.38%); BSE Bankex (up 2.76%; BSE Auto (up 2.08%); BSE Capital Goods (up 1.55%) and BSE Consumer Durables (up 1.45%).
 
Twenty six of the 30 stocks on the Sensex closed in the positive. The main gainers were Bajaj Auto (up 5.01%); ICICI Bank (up 4.59%); Tata Motors (up 4.45%); Cipla (up 3.59%) and Sterlite Industries (up 3.09%). The losers were Hero MotoCorp (down 1.035); Infosys (down 0.98%); BHEL (down 0.71%) and Maruti Suzuki (down 0.39%).
 
The top two A Group gainers on the BSE were—Indiabulls Financial Services (up 10.61%) and Suzlon Energy (up 8.80%).
The top two A Group losers on the BSE were—Apollo Hospitals Enterprise (down 7.95%) and NHPC (down 3.64%).
 
The top two B Group gainers on the BSE were—ABG Infralogics (up 20%) and De Nora India (up 19.99%).
The top two B Group losers on the BSE were—Kiri Industries (down 19.75%) and Spectacle Infotek (down 11.56%).
 
Out of the 50 stocks listed on the Nifty, 43 stocks settled in the positive. The major gainers were ICICI Bank (up 4.92%); Asian Paints (up 4.51%); Tata Motors (up 4.46%); Bajaj Auto (up 4.11%) and Cipla (up 4.02%). The main losers were Infosys (down 1.40%); Maruti Suzuki (down 0.84%); Hero MotoCorp (down 0.83%); BHEL (down 0.76%) and HCL Technologies (down 0.45%).
 
Markets in Asia, with the exception of the Shanghai Composite, closed in the positive on hopes that US policymakers would reach a deal on avoiding higher taxes. Meanwhile, Japanese retail sales declined 1.2% in October on an annual basis, adding to the signs of a slowdown in the country.
 
The Hang Seng advanced 0.99%; the Jakarta Composite gained 0.33%; the KLSE Composite added 0.05%; the Nikkei 225 surged 0.99%; the Straits Times climbed 1.13%; the Seoul Composite jumped 1.15% and the Taiwan Weighted settled 0.92% higher. Bucking the trend, the Shanghai Composite declined 0.51% with brokerages leading the losers on speculations of a reduction in trading fees.
 
At the time of writing, key markets in Europe were trading 0.65% to 1.03% higher and the US stock futures were in the positive, indicating a green opening for US stocks.
 
Back home, foreign institutional investors were net buyers of shares totalling Rs1,082.74 crore on Tuesday while domestic institutional investors were net sellers of equities amounting Rs208.50 crore. 
 
Unichem Laboratories today said it has received the USFDA’s approval to market Tizanidine tablets, a drug used to relieve muscle pain, in the US market. The approval is for tablets in strengths of 2 mg and 4 mg. The stock surged 3.26% to close at Rs186 on the NSE.
 
Amid government directive to PSUs to invest their surplus funds, Coal India (CIL), which is sitting on huge cash-pile, has lined up Rs 50,000 crore investment plans for the next five years. “If they (PSUs) have not invested and they still have surplus cash, they have been told to invest... The principle is use it or lose it,” the finance minister had said. Coal India gained 1.32% to close at Rs368.10 on the NSE.
 
Agro-chemical firm Bayer CropScience today said that it has sold its property at Thane in Maharashtra for Rs1,250 crore to Agile Real Estate. The company said it has entered into two agreements and executed all other incidental documents with Agile and also undertaken all the requisite acts to close the transaction. The stock closed 2.22% higher at Rs1,225 on the NSE.
 

 

User

We are listening!

Solve the equation and enter in the Captcha field.
  Loading...
Close

To continue


Please
Sign Up or Sign In
with

Email
Close

To continue


Please
Sign Up or Sign In
with

Email

BUY NOW

The Scam
24 Year Of The Scam: The Perennial Bestseller, reads like a Thriller!
Moneylife Magazine
Fiercely independent and pro-consumer information on personal finance
Stockletters in 3 Flavours
Outstanding research that beats mutual funds year after year
MAS: Complete Online Financial Advisory
(Includes Moneylife Magazine and Lion Stockletter)