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Antrix Devas deal signed during UPA, was a fraud against India: FM Sitharaman

India's Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman attends a joint news conference with U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin in New Delhi, India, November 1, 2019. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

The Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on January 18 in a press conference highlighted the issues and status of Antrix Devas case and implications of the Supreme Court order.

  • FM took a dig at the previous UPA governments for the issue and alleged why an arbitrator was not appointed.
  • FM said that the Supreme Court upheld the NCLAT, NCLT order to liquidate Devas and the order us order is very comprehensive.
  • The Finance Minister said, “In 2005, when the deal was done, that itself was very controversial.” The Supreme Court’s order reflects how UPA indulged in wrong practices.
  • “The UPA government, led by Congress, is behind the whole fraud. They should be answerable. The SC verdict on Devas scam again shows how Congress has repeatedly sold national resources for a pittance. We will make sure this verdict is used internationally (international arbitration) to fight Devas and hold the erstwhile UPA govt to account,” Sitharaman said.
  • Arbitration tribunals awarded $1.2 billion, plus cost and interest on pleas by Devas shareholders against cancellation of Antrix deal, the Union Finance Minister said. 
  • The Union Minister said that liquidator has been appointed and winding up the process will begin soon. “We are fighting to save taxpayers’ money which otherwise would have gone to pay for the scandalous Antrix-Devas deal,” FM said.
  • The Narendra Modi-led government fighting in every court so that Devas does not get away with Antrix deal fraud, FM said.
  • The FM said, “This kind of selling of primary endowments like wavelengths, satellites or spectrum band, giving it away to private parties and making money from private parties & making a deal out if it marks the feature of the Congress govts.”
  • Antrix Devas deal was signed during UPA, it was a fraud against India.
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