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MHA snooping scandal: more arrests likely


Parikshit Luhtra, Arunima,CNN-IBN
Nov 25, 2010 at 09:24pm IST

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New Delhi: Delhi Police on Thursday said the SIM cards of all four mobile phones owned by IAS officer Ravi Inder Singh had been acquired using different Identity proofs.

Sources said more heads to roll in the corporate snooping scandal at the Home Ministry. More arrests are likely to be expected with Vodafone and telecom officials under the scanner.

Two SIMs were allegedly found registered in the name of Singh's friend Vineet Kumar, while the others were in the name of different persons. Delhi Police are closely scrutinising the addresses of these people.

Top Vodafone executive Sanjeev Arora is also under the scanner for alerting Singh of the tip-off.

Director of internal security Ravi Inder Singh was allegedly passing on information to several private firms including Vodafone and taking kickbacks to get their files cleared by the Home Ministry.

Delhi Police are going to examine over 10,000 calls made by Singh. Vodafone's Sanjeev Arora is likely to be arrested under the Official Secrets Act.

Meanwhile, Singh's counsel O P Wadhwa reacted on the issue, saying they were not talking anything serious.

"The two friends are talking not for the documents, not for information and also not for other things, so what is the value of those talks?" said lawyer O P Wadhwa.

The sex and cash for snooping scam involving IAS officer Ravi Inder Singh and his old friend Vineet Kumar is getting bigger. Investigations indicate Telecom Ministry officials and a top Vodaphone employee Sanjeev Arora are also involved.

For eight months Singh lived in a posh house in Greater Kailash (GK), and the rental of Rs 4 lakhs was paid by temptation food owned by Vineet Kumar. The car that Singh used was provided by temptation foods.

however, that's being explained as a friendly gesture.

"Is helping friend in getting accommodation and vehicle a corruption? They have known each other for several years," said lawyer O P Wadhwa.

The evidence placed on record just shows that Ravi Inder Singh was used by several telecom firms to get their files cleared by the Home Ministry and in the next days the police is going to question both Vineet and him and also analyse the ten thousand calls made between the two.

The call records show that at least two Department of Telecom (DoT) (De officers were referred to as God 1 and God 2 but what is more worrying is the role played by Sanjeev Arora of Vodaphone. He allegedly tipped Singh off that his phone was being tapped...

The phone records of November 2 are very revealing. Here's a summary of the conversation between the two.

At 2 PM: Vineet called Singh to enquire about what to expect and asked: 'Toh kya bhavishyavani hai? (Are you predicting the future?).

At 4 PM: Ravi called back reporting that the work was done ('ji kaam ho gaya, file clear ho gayi.... Ab toh mujhe prasad lene aana padega.'

At 5 PM: Ravi called a senior officer in the mobile service provider to enquire if his phone was being tapped. All phones of Ravi and that of Vineet go dead after the officer confirms the phone tapping.

All this means Ravi Inder Singh could be facing possible suspension and Sanjeev Arora is likely to be arrested under the official secrets act. The role of DoT officials in corporate snooping is also expected to throw more dirt in the way the telecom sector is run and managed in this country.

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