Raja Launches Attack on Manmohan, CAG Vinod Rai in Tell-All Book

In the book ‘2G Saga Unfolds’, Raja claims that he had to fight the telecom lobbies to draft the spectrum policy.

4 min read
Former Telecom minister A Raja reacts as he celebrates along with his supporters after he was acquitted by a special court in the 2G scam case, in New Delhi.

Former telecom minister A Raja is set to release a book named 2G Saga Unfolds, chronicling his arrest and the trial in the 2G case. The CBI Court had acquitted the DMK leader of all charges on 21 December 2017.

In the book set to release almost a month after his acquittal, Raja is believed to have launched a scathing attack on former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh and the then Comptroller and Auditor General Vinod Rai.

According to the copy of the book accessed by News18, Raja claimed that Singh was kept in the dark by his advisors, and that his silence resonated with the “silencing of our nation’s collective conscience.” The DMK leader was particularly miffed when Singh chose to be a passive spectator even after the approval of his telecom policy and his arrest.

Raja: CAG Vinod Rai’s Report is “Mere Trash, Deemed Fit for a Dustbin”

As for the former CAG, the former minister went a step further and remarked that Rai behaved like “a cat that shuts its eyes and then declares the universe is dark.”

The news report further added that Raja remarked that Rai’s report, which laid the rationale for the alleged 2G spectrum scam, was “a mixture of inappropriate legal interpretations, incongruous comparisons and flippant allegations.”

Raja alleged that Vinod Rai should be called out as a witness in the criminal case filed against him. Continuing with his attack, he said that Rai was the ‘sutradhaar’ who created the devious apparition. “His report is mere trash, which is unanimously deemed fit for the dustbin, and his statements would not have stood test of cross-examination,” he alleged.

Raja Left ‘Wounded” By Letter Sent from the Prime Minister’s Office

During his tenure as the telecom minister in UPA II, Raja claimed that he was fighting the telecom lobbies which exercised considerable influence over the PMO. He had to crusade against telecom lobbies to draft the spectrum policy.

One day, he had received a letter from the PMO, and much to his dismay, he was “wounded by the letter’s contents”, stating that the content endorsed the interests of the lobbies.

“This makes me wonder whether this letter was indeed drafted by the PMO…It is still a puzzle to me as to what could have prompted the PM to send that letter to me…With all due respect, I am of the opinion that such a letter bearing the PM’s signature should have never been sent,” he says.

In this book, Raja claims that Singh was oblivious to the fact that CBI raids had taken place on 22 October 2009 with regards to the spectrum allocation. “People will find it hard to believe that the PM was quite surprised when I told him about the CBI raids,” Raja states, talking about his meeting with the PM in South Block after the raids took place.

In the several meetings he had with the former PM, Raja describes one instance when Singh privately disclosed how media reports had been influencing him.

Despite being aware of the telecom ministry’s happenings throughout, Raja lamented that neither the former PM nor the finance minister came to his rescue and “backed his legitimate position”.

Raja went on to add that “governing bodies (CVC, CBI, JPC, Supreme Court) refused to hear his defence” which made him even more helpless.

Excerpts From the Book

A Raja claimed that the Prime Minister’s Office was “monitoring this matter and following up on it, proving false the allegation that the PM was misled or kept in the dark.”

“On 22 October 2009 (after CBI raided telecom ministry and offices of some telecom operators) I met the Prime Minister in his office in South Block at around 7.00 pm. TKA Nair (the then principal secretary in the PMO) was also present. People will find it hard to believe that the PM was quite surprised when I told him about the CBI raids,” Raja writes in his book.

“Unfortunately, neither the Prime Minister nor the Finance Minister came forward...to back my legitimate position…Dr Manmohan Singh’s palpable silence in relation to defending my wholly justified actions, especially when the governing bodies (CVC, CBI, JPC, Supreme Court) were refusing to hear my defence, felt to me like a silencing of our nation’s collective conscience.”

"I came to Delhi from Chennai on the evening of 14 November. When I landed in Delhi around 9.00 pm, TR Baalu informed me that I could resign as per the advice of our party leader. While on the way to my official residence 2A, Motilal Nehru Marg, I sought an appointment with the PM. I called in my PA, prepared my resignation letter, and then went to the PM’s residence. The Prime Minister appeared to be gloomy and perturbed. He offered me tea and I handed him my resignation letter.”

"He spoke dejectedly about the whole situation, the oral observations of the Supreme Court and about his name having been unduly dragged down. The Prime Minister touched upon the introduction of 3G service to the nation and agreed with the impropriety of the CAG’s views. While I was clear and firm as I spoke to him, I was unable to make out anything from the vexed-look of the Prime Minister. Was it due to the condemning remarks from the Supreme Court or due to his assuming that there were irregularities in the files in a big way? I was not sure and could not guess”.

(With inputs from News18.)

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