Govt loses Rs.26K Crore due to Telecom Minister

Govt loses 26K Crore due to Telecom Minister

By SiliconIndia   |    11 Comments
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Govt loses Rs.26K Crore due to Telecom Minister
New Delhi: Telecom minister A Raja has made a big loss to the government by disregarding the advice of many experts and persisiting with an outdated policy for issuing new telecom licences. Central government has lost over Rs 26,000 crore due to the telecom minister, accused Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG).

CAG's audit of DoT relates to the issue of new pan-India licences in 2008 at Rs 1,651 crore, a price fixed in 2001 when mobile subscriber base was 45 million and industry valuations were poor. The audit said many experts, including the telecom secretary, had suggested to DoT that the award of new licences needed to be re-examined since the entry fee had not been revised from 2001. The 2001 fee was based on criteria that did not exist in 2008. The industry had grown bigger, richer and the subscriber base had soared to over 300 million from 45 million.

Raja, who has survived several calls for his removal over charges of corruption, 'single-handedly' decided to continue with the policy that cost the government Rs 26,685 crore in revenue, said CAG in its annual report.

A senior Department of Telecom (DoT) official clarified that "government decisions are taken based on merit than on immediate pecuniary considerations such as interest, profit/loss, etc." DoT also said that processing of licences is time-consuming as it involves various approvals and security clearances. CAG has sought responses from DoT on its observations.

The CBI, in an FIR filed in November last year, accused certain DoT officials and executives of some private telecom companies of collusion in a bid to get new licences. The agency said the licences were sold without competitive bidding at a nominal rate based on prices fixed in 2001, resulting in a loss of Rs 22,000 crore to the government. In its report, CAG has lent credence to some of CBI's charges.

CAG, a constitutional authority, audits all government departments and Public Sector Undertakings every year.

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Reader's comments(11)
1: I don't understand that how the portfolio of Telecom Minister can be given to such a person who does not even understand the ABC of the Telecom and not even ready to agree with the PM and the Telecom experts. It is clearly a case of CORRUPTION.
Posted by:Abhishek U - 07 Apr, 2010
Yes he is the Minister in the cabinet of our Mr.Clean,efficient,great economist,father of modern corporate India,Mr.manMohan Singh.Mr.Singh should be proud of having such a minister in his cabinet.
Shyam Prabhakar Kunte Replied to: Abhishek U - 07 Apr, 2010
3: Rahulji are you there? People of India have great hope on Rahul Gandhi than our Prime Minister and Soniaji. Please Rahulji takem immediate action against Mr.Raja and Sack him immediately, if he is not doing his job. We also wonder how this Portfolio given to this man, Mr.Raja is home cooker for Mrs.Kanimozi. Congress will loose its images because of this scam.
Posted by:Deepak Bandari - 07 Apr, 2010
4: raja is a stupid he is spoiling DMK\'s name in delhi
Posted by:prabhu - 07 Apr, 2010
5: I dont why and where the english media is hiding to report this.........
Posted by:kiran - 07 Apr, 2010
6: How come there is no outcry from other parties (at least from opposition) for this?
This is such a big scam.
Pretty surprised or what I am thinking is 22K crore is enough to grease palms of all parties.
Posted by:Ram - 07 Apr, 2010
BJP and ADMK has been racking up this issue since last one year but MEDIA is not interested as it may stand to expose UPA.Also the MEDIA knows that this DMK minister has the full blessing of PM and Madam.
Shyam Replied to: Ram - 07 Apr, 2010
Safal Chandra Kapoor Replied to: Ram - 07 Apr, 2010
9: DMK Delhi Money for Karunanidhi. From where else it will come and who else will be the Collection agent. Shameful. Will the PM and Sonia Gandhi come out of their shells and take immediete action by sacking the Minister. DMK is more dependent on Congress for their survival in Chennai than the latter in Delhi. It is a huge loss to the Country an amount which could have been useful to the millions of poor people.
Posted by:Vijaykumar - 07 Apr, 2010
10: Sack Telecom Minister RAJA. Dr.Manmohan Singh and Ms.Sonia Gandhi should immediately send this tainted man and order judicial probe by sitting Supreme Court Judge. Need not wait for a nod from Mr.Karunaniddhi.
Andrew A Thangaraj
Posted by:Andrew A. Thangaraj - 07 Apr, 2010
11: Did he make any benefit out of this?
Posted by:Jyoti - 06 Apr, 2010