India’s huge graft trial focuses on bail pleas

Reuters – Five senior business executives fought to win bail amid chaotic court proceedings on Friday in a trial over India’s biggest corruption scandal that has strained Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s coalition and hurt investor sentiment. Lawyers wrangled over the sloppy quality of documents presented to the court in the Indian capital as khaki-clad policemen milled around sacked telecoms minister Andhimutu Raja, the man at the centre of a $39 billion scandal. The court will rule on the bail applications of officials from the Indian joint ventures of Norway’s Telenor , the United Arab Emirates’ Etisalat and from India’s Reliance ADA group, owned by tycoon Anil Ambani, named in the case. Raja and the executives are charged with manipulating the grants of telecoms licences in the world’s fastest-growing telecoms market, causing a potential loss to the government of $39 billion. Read Article