VSNL Disinvestment - Is it new Telecom Scam ?

Nine years after Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s NDA government sold a 25% stake in long distance telecom carrier VSNL to the Tatas, communications minister Kapil Sibal on Monday said the “disinvestment does not seem to be fair and transparent” and ordered a probe into the delay in demerging surplus land of 773 acres. Arun Shourie was disinvestment minister at the time.
Sibal’s move came even as sources close to the Tata group said the proposed demerger of surplus land was stuck due to the Centre dragging its feet on the three options to separate the company's real estate assets spread across New Delhi, Pune, Chennai and Kolkata. The board of Tata Communications had sent a proposal in this regard to the DoT in 2005, but is said to be still waiting to hear from the government, which now holds 26% in the company.
Tata Communications said in a statement: “Tata Communications welcomes any government process that hopefully will expedite the demerger of surplus land, which we have repeatedly requested in the best interests of the company and its shareholders. We categorically deny that Tata Communications or the Tata group has benefited or seeks to derive benefit from the surplus land.” Sibal ordered that a committee under the additional secretary in the telecom department examine the issue and submit its report by the end of the month. In a note to the telecom secretary, the minister said, “The strategic partner has enjoyed the precious government land without paying a single rupee for it,” Sibal said in his note.