Coal scam: Court warns CBI officer to be careful

Coal scam: Court warns CBI officer to be careful
Coal scam: Court warns CBI officer to be careful

A CBI officer has been warned to be careful by a special court, after it was informed that the copy of a statement of an accused, who was earlier cited as a witness in a coal scam case, was supplied to other accused persons “inadvertently” and “due to oversight”.

The CBI officer’s explanation came after the court wanted to know under what circumstances the statement of accused Vishwas Sawakhande, the then Director in Directorate of Geology and Mining in Maharashtra government and who was earlier cited as a witness, was supplied to another accused.

“Written explanation has been submitted by investigating officer as to the circumstances in which statement of accused Vishwas Sawakhande who was earlier cited as a witness came to be supplied to the accused persons.

“It has been submitted that inadvertently and due to oversight the copy of the said statement came to be supplied to the accused persons. IO Inspector Jitender Sharma is warned to be careful in future,” said Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar who had earlier asked why the statement was supplied to the accused when the IO was not supposed to do so.

Meanwhile, the counsel for the accused informed the court that documents supplied to them along with the charge sheet were complete except translation of the documents which were in Marathi.

To this, the IO submitted that though the translation was received, it was not found to be proper and the concerned authority has been requested to supply them afresh.

The court has fixed the case for supply of documents on November 30.

During the hearing, the court disposed of a CBI plea and removed the name of accused Sawakhande from the list of witnesses as he has since been summoned as an accused by the court.

The case pertains to alleged irregularities in allocation of Lohara (East) coal block in Maharashtra to Nagpur-based accused firm Grace Industries Ltd (GIL).

The court had earlier granted bail to ex-Coal Secretary H C Gupta and four others, including a senior public servant, in connection with the case.

Besides Gupta, bail was granted bail to public servant K S Kropha, a former Joint Director in the Ministry of Coal, Sawakhande and directors of GIL, Mukesh Gupta and Seema Gupta.

The court had summoned GIL and the five individuals as accused in the case for alleged offences punishable under sections 120 B (criminal conspiracy) read with 409 (criminal breach of trust by public servant) and 420 (cheating) of IPC and under relevant provisions of Prevention of Corruption Act.

According to CBI, the 34th Screening Committee had allotted Lohara (East) coal block jointly to M/s GIL and to M/s Murli Agro Products Pvt Ltd and the letter of allotment was issued on June 27, 2008.

CBI had chargesheeted the firm and one of its directors alleging they had falsely misrepresented facts to bag coal block.


( Source – PTI )

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