HC asks 2G accused to complete plantation drive

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Tuesday directed 2G spectrum accused – Shahid Usman Balwa of Swan Telecom and others – to comply with its earlier order and complete a plantation drive.

The court had ordered the litigants to plant trees in the Ridge area here for failing to file responses on an appeal by the Enforcement Directorate and the Central Bureau of Investigation challenging their acquittal in the 2G case.

Justice Sangita Dhingra Sehgal listed the matter for further hearing on October 24.

On February 7, the court had asked Balwa, businessman Rajiv Agarwal and three companies — Dynamix Reality Pvt Ltd, DB Reality and Nihar Constructions — to plant 3,000 trees each.

Later, the court agreed to Balwa’s and Agarwal’s plea to reduce the number of trees to 1,500.

The defence counsel told the court that they have planted some trees and the remainder was under progress. Sixty days more were sought to complete the drive.

Former Telecom Minister A. Raja’s close aide R.K. Chandolia, Asif Balwa and Rajiv Agarwal, directors of Kusegaon Fruits and Vegetables Pvt Ltd, were earlier asked to plant 500 saplings each.

The court ordered that the trees should be of indigenous variety and must be taken care of till the monsoon.

The court was hearing an appeal challenging acquittal of Raja, DMK MP Kanimozhi and others by a special court in December 2017.

The probe agencies moved the court in March 2018 challenging the trial court’s order.

When Balwa and the others failed to reply despite repeated reminders, the court asked them to carry out a plantation drive instead of imposing monetary costs on them.