A second Indian communications minister is charged in telecom scam

Dayanidhi Maran is alleged to have helped a foreign acquirer to buy operator Aircel

India's top investigative agency, the Central Bureau of Investigation, said Monday that it has registered a case against former federal minister Dayanidhi Maran, in connection with ongoing investigations into alleged scams in the Ministry of Communications.

The CBI said it conducted raids Monday in nine places in Delhi and Chennai. The case has been filed against Maran and some business executives under the country's Prevention of Corruption Act.

The CBI had been investigating Maran for some time on charges that he coerced the promoter of mobile operator Aircel to sell his stake to Maxis Communications in Malaysia by delaying clearances of spectrum to Aircel.

Maran, India's telecom minister between 2004 and 2007, is the second former minister of communications to be investigated. His successor, A. Raja, has been under arrest since February after the CBI charged him with involvement in an alleged out-of-turn allotment of 2G licenses and spectrum in 2008. Maran and Raja both belong to the Dravida Munnettra Kazhagam, a coalition partner of the ruling Congress party in the federal government.

At the instruction of the country's Supreme Court, the CBI broadened its investigation to include not only the 2008 allocations, but also the allotment of licenses and policy changes by the telecom ministry from 2001.

The Monday raids by the CBI came a few hours before the current communications minister, Kapil Sibal, was due to announce a new draft telecom policy for the country that is expected to plug loopholes in earlier rules.

The irregular allocations of 2G licenses and spectrum to some Indian operators in 2008, without an auction, may have cost the country about US$39 billion, according to a report by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG). The report alleged that a "first come, first served" rule was manipulated to favor some companies.

The case filed Monday by the CBI against Maran may reveal that there were irregularities in the telecom ministry even before the 2008 scam.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags legaltelecommunicationtelephonyCarriersCriminalA. RajaDayanidhi MaranIndian Ministry of Communications

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Ribeiro

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?