Sunday, February 20, 2011

CBI probes Balwa links with 2 former Guj cops ,Duo Facilitated 2G Scam Accused’s Realty Investments

Ahmedabad: Two senior IPS officers from Gujarat, who retired recently, may have helped 2G scam accused Shahid Balwa in making secret investments in Gujarat’s booming realty market.

The CBI, Gandhinagar is now probing links between the Dynamix Balwas (DB) group managing director and the two former cops — a former director general of police (DGP) and an additional DGP. They two helped Balwa tap into numerous housing projects and land deals across the state.

“Balwa has revealed the names of these two retired senior officers from Gujarat during interrogation by CBI in Delhi. While the DGP’s family members are involved in realty business, the retired add i t i o n a l DGP has been an agent for Balwa in land deals across Gujarat,” said a CBI official. CBI sleuths have also contacted the I-T department to track Balwa’s financial footprint in the state.

CBI, Gandhinagar, has been asked by its Delhi counterpart to identify specific properties in Gujarat in which Balwa has invested. “The two retired top cops have been working closely with Balwa for long. Family members of both cops are into construction businesses. Balwa has invested heavily in their projects,” a CBI officer added. “It will, however, not be easy to prove that Balwa has invested in land deals here.”

In fact, the son of one of the IPS officers launched a realty project near Gandhinagar recently which is touted to be one of the most expensive housing projects in the state. “We have been told that this project may have been funded by Balwa. We will scrutinise all documents and send them to CBI officials in Delhi,” an official in Gandhinagar said. Balwa, who is the promoter of Swan Telecom, was arrested for his alleged involvement in the 2G spectrum scam along with former telecom minister A Raja.

CBI seeks Trai’s help to compute spectrum loss

New Delhi: CBI, which is probing the 2G spectrum scam, has reportedly sought telecom regulator Trai’s help to ascertain the loss to the government in allocation of spectrum to all operators between 2001 and 2008.

Sources in the agency said the decision to approach TraiI was taken in view of fluctuating estimates of losses to the exchequer on account of the spectrum allocation in 2008. “We have requested Trai to set up an expert team which will go into the entire gamut of spectrum pricing and give us an estimated loss which could be proved in court,” a senior official said.

This comes within days of Trai recommending a pan-India licence fee of Rs 10,972.45 crore for 6.2 Mhz of start-up spectrum with effect from April 1, 2010, as against the Rs 1,658 crore that was being paid by operators till now.

Trai also recommended that each Mhz of additional spectrum held by operators should cost a one-time fee of Rs 4,571.87 crore (all-India), though it would vary from circle to circle and the operators would only have to pay for those zones where they hold extra spectrum.

CBI had earlier said the government may have lost over Rs 22,000 crore due to irregularities in allocation of spectrum in January 2008 by former telecom minister A Raja, who was arrested earlier this month on charges of favouring some private firms.

Later, the investigating agency had estimated the loss at around Rs 50,000 crore, as estimated by the Enforcement Directorate.

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