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What made Subramaniam put in papers
R Sedhuraman
Legal Correspondent

New Delhi, July 10
Solicitor-General Gopal Subramaniam today clarified that he put in his papers yesterday as he was not even informed about Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal’s move to sideline him in the 2G scam case and engage a private lawyer as government’s special counsel.

He said he felt it was necessary to quit for protecting the decorum of the office of the Solicitor-General as it was the second highest post of law officer, next only to that of the Attorney-General. “It is unfair” on the part of the government to appoint a special counsel without taking the Solicitor-General into confidence, he explained.

The Solicitor-General had yesterday called up Law Minister M Veerappa Moily, who was in Bangalore, to convey his decision to quit and lodge his protest against his unceremonious removal from the case which was being heard by the Supreme Court. Today, the Solicitor-General paid a courtesy call on President Pratibha Patil.

The government had appointed senior counsel Rohington Nariman to defend Sibal in a PIL case, which said the telecom minister had let off Reliance Communications with a Rs 5-crore penalty instead of slapping a Rs 650-crore fine for allegedly flouting licence conditions.

Moily has advised the Solicitor-General to wait till Monday when he would be back in Delhi. The PIL in the 2G case is slated for hearing in the Supreme Court. The Solicitor-General refused to take a query as to whether he would stick to his decision to quit, indicating that he was keeping his options open.

This was not the first time Gopal Subramaniam has been removed from the 2G case. In November last year, the Prime Minister’s Office replaced him with Attorney-General GE Vahanvati to put forth its viewpoints to the Supreme Court. The Solicitor-General, however, continued to represent the telecom ministry in the 2G case. Further, the Solicitor-General has been unsuccessful in protecting the government from the stinging remarks of the Supreme Court in several other cases, including those relating to black money and Naxal violence.





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