The key question being asked in political circles is who was repsonsible for the crucial 23 words on Page 10 of the 11-page March 25, 2011, backgrounder on the 2G scam? The note has plunged Union home minister P. Chidambaram and the Congress into a political crisis. The words in question observe that, had the finance ministry, then under Chidambaram, stuck to its stand of auctioning the 2G spectrum, A. Raja, a former telecom minister who is now in jail, would not have been able to get away with the scam, involving an exchequer loss of Rs 1.72 lakh crore.
So was it with the present finance minister Pranab Mukherjee’s tacit approval that this input was incorporated? A section of Congressmen suspect it was. Their reasoning: a note on 2G allocation, a scam which was creating such a great furore, would have been carefully vetted by a shrewd politician and minister like Pranab. More so since Raja had been arrested by the CBI on February 2. But all this is a surmise arrived at by party leaders and political observers.