06 December, 2020

A 252-Cr Guarantee To A Firm Worth Less Than 2.5 Cr...

The PAC on the 4G auction in 2010 is to take up the final CAG report. Will Reliance Jio get mired in the alleged collusion scandal in pan-India licences?

A 252-Cr Guarantee To A Firm Worth Less Than 2.5 Cr...

The “routine transfer” of a senior officer at the sprawling, tree-lined telecom branch office of the Comp­troller and Auditor General (CAG) on Delhi’s Shamnath Marg has raised eyebrows. R.B. Sinha, director-general, audit, post and telecom, was on June 22 peremptorily shifted out barely two years into the job. Sinha had played a key role in preparing the CAG audit reports into the 4G auction that was ultimately won by RIL’s Reliance Jio Ltd.

CAG officials dismiss the fuss, pointing out that the final report on the 4G auctions has already been submitted in the Budget session of Parliament this year. But the fact is there could be trouble ahead for Reliance Jio with the parliamentary accounts committee (PAC) taking up the report. At a PAC meeting in late May, BJP MP Kirit Somaiya proposed that the 4G auction be scrutinised.

Sinha’s presence at the PAC sittings could have made things uncomfortable for Reliance Jio and the DoT because of fears that he could have taken a view contrary to what was in the final CAG report. Parallels are...



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