2G: Court orders issuance of fresh summons to accused in Essar, Loop deals

Arun S. New Delhi | Updated on March 12, 2018

The Special Court, hearing the 2G spectrum case, on Friday ordered issuance of fresh summons to the accused including Essar Group’s Mr Ravikant Ruia and Mr Anshuman Ruia as well as Loop Telecom promoters Ms Kiran Khaitan and Mr I P Khaitan.

These four, along with Mr Vikash Saraf, Director (Strategy and Planning), Essar Group, will have to appear before the court on February 22.

The order on fresh summons was needed as the five accused did not appear before the Special Court on Monday despite its order last month asking them to appear on Friday.

The CBI maintained that summonses were pasted outside their respective residences in Mumbai and Delhi.

However, the counsel representing Mr Saraf and the three accused companies (Essar Teleholdings, Loop Telecom and Loop Mobile India) claimed that summonses were not “duly” served on the Ruias and the Khaitans who are residing overseas.

“The CBI, despite having information about the residential status of Ruias, has failed to inform the court and follow the due process,” Essar Group said.

The Special Judge Mr O P Saini then said, “On the face of it, I do not find anything wrong with the service (of summons) by affixation.”

“However, considering the fact that all the four accused were stated by their employees to be in Dubai, I deem it proper that before issuing any coercive process against these four accused for procuring their presence in the court, one more attempt be made to effect personal service or in the alternative service by affixation, on them,” the judge added.

“I may add that the addresses of Mumbai and Delhi respectively were given by these four accused (the two Ruias and the Khaitans) voluntarily to the investigating agency during investigation and are the last known addresses available on record and are considered good for their service (of summons),” he said.

Earlier, the representatives and lawyers of the three accused companies as well as the counsel for Mr Saraf appeared before the court.

The court permitted Mr Saraf’s application (filed by his counsel Mr Siddharth Luthra) for exemption from personal appearance on Friday on the ground that he is employed abroad.

The lawyers representing the three accused companies and Mr Saraf claimed that the Special Court has no jurisdiction to hear the case against them because the CBI chargesheet itself states that there is no charge against them or the other five accused under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

They wanted the matter (on issuance of summons) to be adjourned as the issue of jurisdiction is pending before the High Court.

Earlier, the High Court had asked the Essar Teleholdings, Loop Telecom and the CBI to move the Supreme Court to get further directions on the jurisdiction issue. The Special Court was set up exclusively to hear all matters connected to the 2G case on the apex court’s directions.

However, the CBI counsel Mr U U Lalit objected to adjournment of the case in the Special Court saying the accused “are indirectly asking for the same relief (staying of proceedings) which they have failed to get from the Delhi High Court.”

Published on January 27, 2012

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