MUMBAI: Even as the Congress-led UPA Government is smarting after the Supreme Court cancelled 2G telecom licences, Union Agriculture Minister and NCP chief Sharad Pawar came out in strong defence of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Pawar said the SC judgment had taken note of Singh’s letter to then Telecom Minister A Raja, asking him to ensure “fairness and transparency” in the allocation process and pointed out that Raja had disregarded it. The decision would also lead to debates in potential foreign investors interested in India, said Pawar and hinted that the judgment would lead to ministers adopting a ‘cautious approach’. Defends Praful Pawar also defended cabinet colleague Praful Patel over graft allegations. Patel, the incumbent Minister for Heavy Industries, faces charges regarding an Air India contract during his tenure as the Minister for Civil Aviation, after reports in this regard appeared in a Canadian newspaper. He added that the report ‘specifically mentioned that there is no evidence.... (that) the money has been paid to Praful Patel’ and pointed out that the decision regarding the contract in question had not been taken.