n this edition of Kahiye Janab, Subramaniam Swamy gets candid with Zeenews.com’s Swati Chaturvedi on the proceedings in the 2G case, black money issue and about whether or not he would enter active politics.
Swati: A Raja in jail and Kanimozhi’s name on the 2G chargesheet. You seem to have shaken the entire establishment single handedly. Had you earlier thought your persistent efforts will culminate into results like these?
Swamy: Yes. I had complete belief in the system because I know democracy truly exists in India. Kanimozhi would be presented before the court on May 6, and her bail plea is very likely to be rejected and she too may find herself behind bars. As per a provision in CrPC, there must be an extraordinary reason for sending a woman to jail and Kanimozhi’s case provides a strong reason for the same.
Swati: Of late, there has been a sponsored campaign against corporate honchos being jailed, claiming that it has dented the country’s image on the global canvas and that it will further result into huge FDI outflows. What’s your take on this?
Swamy: No. I believe, this has instead added shine to India’s reputation globally. If you read the related editorials and articles, they are on a positive note. There are many in our country with a tendency to spread negativity, but I am very optimistic about my country. It is not for nothing that I left Harvard and came to India. Ours is truly a religious and cultural nation, where ‘sanatan dharma’ has survived the longest.
Swati: It’s very easy to give interviews, but very difficult to get the things done. You have single handedly managed to confront the entire legal firepower of the country. Tell us how tough has it been for you to contend in the court each minute legal nitty-gritty?
Swamy: Yes, it is tough but the way our judges come to court after having studied the cases marvellously and the way they question government, leaves me completely mesmerized. I have never seen such a Supreme Court elsewhere, which is so heavily thronged just like in Hindi films (laughs).
I have never felt that I am alone in my fight against corruption.
Swati: DMK has now come to mean as ‘Delhi Money to Karunanidhi’. With the 2G trail leading to the doorsteps of DMK, a question that looms large is whether DMK, which is just a coalition party, could stage the whole 2G drama in its individual capacity? A Raja first involved the cabinet and then the PMO and later Kapil Sibal chipped in with a bold ‘zero-loss to exchequer’. Do you think it is the work of DMK alone?
Swamy: According to the documents I have, A Raja, in 2008, issued the telecom licenses of 2G, at the rates of 2001, whereas they were of a value ten times higher. So the major question that arises is – did he determine the spectrum rates on his own? PM has indirectly accepted in Parliament that in 2006, it was due to DayanidhI Maran’s pressure that a decision was reached, according to which the spectrum rates were to be fixed by two ministers, and were to be subsequently accepted by the cabinet. The two ministers were, Telecom Minister A Raja and P Chidambaram, the then Finance Minister. So, if Raja is said to be a culprit because he decided the rates, then Chidambaram, too must share the blame equally.
Swati: Some people say, when it comes to Chidambaram, you have got personal scores to settle. Also, when Chidambaram was asked about you, he himself said that you felt vendetta against him?
Swamy (bursting into laughter): I don’t even know him personally. It was only in 1977, when Chidambaram himself heralded – “I was in Swamy’s class” that I came to know that he had been a student at Harvard Business School while I was a professor there. But in a huge class of hundreds, I never noticed Chidambaram.
Swati: Where do you think is the 2G case heading to? In spite of a good deal of work done, CBI still faces criticism.
Swamy: Our bureaucrats, whether they are in CBI, IAS or IFS, they are top graders. They are well read and intelligent. Our ministers manage to get positions even without passing college exams, while generally officials attain posts only after competing in tough exams and completing harsh trainings. They are like horses. If they get a good master, they cover miles speedily, but if they get incompetent riders, the horse throws them down and runs away.
Swati: CBI is doing great work as far as 2G is concerned, but there are some other cases, where cases have not been able to gather much steam. As Julian Assange has recently revealed, the largest chunk of the entire black money in Swiss Banks is in the name of Indians. What’s your take on it?
Swamy: Well, the case is under the jurisdiction of Supreme Court. Government is not ready to disclose the names, but I will tell you, out of the 16 names given by Germany, one name is that of an important minister’s son, who possesses thousands of crores stashed in his Swiss bank account.
Swati: By his statements on black money, Assange has only confirmed what we have been suspecting all these years. But on this issue, there seems to be unanimity of inaction across party lines. Be it BJP or Congress, none is ready to act or speak out. How long will it continue?
Swamy: This will continue as long as people’s indignation does not reach an ignition point. Because of being ruled for long years, there hasn’t been a cultural renaissance in our country. There is an element of uncertainty in people. There are many who seek to spread disappointment. But I still believe in the institutions of country and am optimistic that the guilty will be taken to task.
Swati: What’s the wildest thing people have ever said about you?
Swamy: Well, they can’t say I am uneducated, corrupt or a loafer. The thing they get to say about me is that I am very stubborn and don’t heed to anyone; that I am not a team player.
Swati: About you being an RSS agent?
Swamy: I do not have any objection to being called so. I have a good view about RSS. I have been a Jansanghi myself and worked with them.
Swati: You are a public warrior, always fighting for the people. Then why does BJP consider you as hot potato, though RSS respects you?
Swamy: You should ask BJP this, though there are many in BJP who think well of me.
Swati: As I previously pointed out, unanimity seems to have developed between BJP and Congress over big issues like corruption and black money. Rather than BJP, it seems as if people like you play the real opposition.
Swamy: This is called the ‘cartelization of democracy and Indian politics’ – a condition which is often seen in banana republics. Though I reiterate I am quite optimistic about my country and its institutions.
Swati: The final question – after this success in 2G case, does Subramanian Swamy plan to enter BJP or active politics?
Swamy: This is God’s will. I will just go on doing what I have to do. I have been an MP five times and twice been the minister. As Shri Krishna says in ‘Gita’, one just has to work, fruits will follow automatically. I have already been awarded with many good results. I just want that all the powers, who revere Hindutva, should come together for the good of the country, spearheaded by any powerful leader, be it Baba Ramdev, RSS or VHP.