NEW DELHI: Former Telecom Minister A. Raja on Monday alleged in a court here that CBI has put pressure on his former aide Aseervatham Achary, a key 2G spectrum case witness, to depose falsely against him as the agency failed to find anything to “link” him with other accused in the case.
Mr. Achary, Raja’s ex-Additional Private Secretary, however, denied the allegation of the former Telecom Minister saying “it is wrong to suggest that I am deposing falsely.”
Mr. Raja’s counsel Sushil Kumar told Mr. Achary that as the former minister did not promote him in politics, he chose to become a false witness for the CBI in the case.
“You became a CBI witness under the pressure of CBI that you will also be made an accused in the case,” Mr. Kumar said while cross-examining Mr. Achary.
“It is wrong to suggest that I became a witness in this case only when CBI could not find anything to connect Raja with other accused persons. It is wrong to suggest that I was under pressure of CBI because of the possession of assets disproportionate to my known sources of income,” Mr. Achary told Special CBI Judge O P Saini.
He said “it is wrong to suggest that I was unhappy with A Raja as he did not promote me in politics. It is wrong to suggest that for these reasons I chose to become a false witness against him for the prosecution (CBI).”
Mr. Achary had earlier told the court that Swan Telecom Promoters Shahid Usman Balwa and Vinod Goenka and Unitech MD Sanjay Chandra used to meet Mr. Raja regularly during his stint with the Ministry of Environment and Forests in 2004-07.
He had said these corporate executives, co-accused in 2G case, also used to meet Mr. Raja’s private secretary R.K. Chandolia for clearances of their real-estate projects from the Environment Ministry.