No criminality in 5.8k intercepted calls in Radia tapes: CBI to SC


New Delhi: Notorious after almost 12 yearsRadia tape‘ Tarnishing the reputation of many, including politicians, businessmen, lawyers and journalists, the Center on Wednesday told the Supreme Court that the CBI probe into the intercepted conversations did not reveal any criminality.
The CBI had registered 14 preliminary inquiries in this regard, Additional Solicitor General Aishwarya Bhatti informed a bench of Justices DY Chandrachud, Hima Kohli and PS Narasimha.
This was tantamount to giving a clean chit to corporate lobbyists Neera Radiawho appeared to have connections in social, political, bureaucratic and journalistic circles and her intercepted telephonic conversations that allegedly ranged from resolving personal issues to appointing ministers in the cabinet to deciding what to write to journalists.
Additional Solicitor General Aishwarya Bhati on Wednesday told an SC bench that the case related to the Radia tapes has become virtually moot as petitioner Ratan N Tata, chairman emeritus of the Tata Group, seeks protection of his privacy and a ban on publishing excerpts to the media. Intercepted conversations with corporate lobbyist Neera Radia have been significantly addressed by amendments to the Indian Telegraph Act to strengthen the interception process and the 2017 judgment of a nine-judge SC bench in the Puttaswamy case to enhance the right to privacy. right to life.
But the NGO ‘Centre for PIL’, which sought to make the conversation public, said through advocate Prashant Bhushan that they would study the matter to answer the court’s question – “what more needs to be done in this regard”. The bench told Bhushan that if he had a separate cause of action arising out of any of the issues, he could file a separate petition. The Supreme Court has adjourned the hearing of this case till October 17.
By 2012, leaked excerpts of Radia’s intercepted calls, among others, and the subsequent inquiry ordered by the SC made daily headlines. On the order of an SC bench headed by Justice GS Singhvi, the IT department, which had intercepted Radia’s telephone calls on the direction of the finance ministry, submitted the transcript of all 5,851 call records on January 8, 2013.
On February 21, 2013, the SC constituted a special team of CBI and IT department officials to go through the transcripts and “submit a report on whether the conversations indicate the commission of a criminal offense by the interlocutors”. The team submitted its report on July 30, 2013.
On July 31, 2013, the CBI volunteered before the SC to “investigate certain matters mentioned in the report”. The CBI filed a sealed cover report on its investigation on March 25, 2014.
The last effective hearing was held on April 29, 2014, when the SC framed the following issues for decision in Tata’s 2010 writ petition – right to privacy against the government; right to privacy vis-à-vis the media; and right to information.
“The recorded conversations between various persons which raised the issue of criminality or illegality in awarding various contracts etc. to private parties will be taken up after completion of hearing of the above three issues,” the bench said. had said

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