The 2G spectrum scam involved officials and ministers in the Government of India illegally undercharging mobile telephony companies for frequency allocation licenses, which they would use to create 2G subscriptions for cell phones. According to a report submitted by the Comptroller and Auditor General based on money collected from 3G licenses, the loss to the exchequer was 176,379 crore (US$39.16 billion). The issuing of the 2G licenses occurred in 2008, but the scam came to public notice when the Indian Income Tax Department investigated political lobbyist Niira Radia and the Supreme Court of India took Subramaniam Swamy's complaints on record [With Case type:Writ Petition (Civil),Case No:10, Year:2011]. The case details of the main PIL filed with the supreme court is Type:Writ Petition (Civil),Case No:423, Year:2010. Former Telecom Minister of the NDA government Arun Shourie was the whistleblower who helped uncover the scam and also exposed many loopholes in the UPA government's policy towards issuing telecom licences. In 2008, the Income Tax department, after orders from the ministry of Home and the PMO, began tapping the phones of Nira Radia. This was done to help with an ongoing investigation into a case where it was alleged that Niira Radia had acted as a spy. Some of the many conversations recorded over 300 days were leaked to the media. The intense controversy around the leaked tapes became known in the media as the Radia tapes controversy. The tapes featured some conversations between politicians, journalists and corporatation. Politicians like Karunanidhi, journalists like Barkha Dutt and Vir Sanghvi and industrial groups like the Tata Group were either participants or mentioned in these tapes.
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