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Telecom scam: CBI files chargesheet against Ruias, Khaitans

New Delhi, Mon, 12 Dec 2011 ANI

New Delhi, Dec.12 (ANI): The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday filed chargesheets against corporate giants Ruias and the Khaitans in connection with the telecom scam.


The CBI chargesheet names Ravi Ruia, the Vice Chairman of Essar Group; Anshuman Ruia, Director of the Essar Group; promoters of Telecom, IP Khaitan and Kiran Khaitan; and Vikas Saraf, CEO, Essar Telecommunication.


This is the third chargesheet in the case that has ripped through corporate and political India.


The CBI has alleged that in 2008, Loop was used as a front by Essar to collect more licenses and spectrum than was legally allowed.


The licenses for Loop - 21 circles for about 1450 crores - were granted by A Raja, who was arrested in February for using his post as telecom minister to gift licenses to ineligible companies.


Law and Justice Minister Salman Khurshid had last week said he did not believe either company had broken the country's laws.


Attorney General G E Vahanvati when asked for his opinion, advised the CBI that the two firms seemed to be "alter egos."


India's telecom rules mandate that a company cannot hold more than 10 per cent in two operating licenses in the same circle.


To get around that, the CBI says, Essar used Loop as a proxy.


Essar has denied all charges and said it will take legal recourse.


The first chargesheet in the telecom scam, filed early in April this year, saw a similar accusation by the CBI against Reliance Telecom, which accused Anil Ambani's company of using Swan Telecom as a proxy.


Top executives from both companies were arrested and spent several months in jail before being granted bail just a few weeks ago.


The Ministry of Corporate Affairs, headed by Veerappa Moily, has said that in its opinion, neither Loop nor Swan can be considered "associates" of Essar and Reliance.


The ministry said it's up to the Department of Telecom to determine if laws on ownership were broken.


In July, the Essar group exited the telecom sector after selling its 33 per cent stake in a joint venture with Vodafone.(ANI)


Read More: Delhi | Law | Mon | Veerappa Moily

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