Coalscam:Court frames charges against ex-coal secy, 5 others

coal scamA special court today framed charges against former coal secretary H C Gupta and five others in a coal scam case pertaining to alleged irregularities in allocation of a coal block in Madhya Pradesh to an accused firm.

Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar put the six on trial for alleged offences under section 120-B (criminal conspiracy) read with 420 (cheating), 409 (criminal breach of trust by public servant) of IPC and under relevant provisions of Prevention of Corruption Act.

Besides Gupta, the court framed charges against two senior public servants, K S Kropha and K C Samria, firm Kamal Sponge Steel and Power Ltd (KSSPL), its managing director Pawan Kumar Ahluwalia and chartered accountant Amit Goyal.

Kropha was the then Joint Secretary in Ministry of Coal, while Samria was the then Director (Coal Allocation-I) section in the ministry. The court has now fixed the matter October 28 for admission/denial of documents by accused, filed in the case by CBI.

The court had on October 1 ordered framing of charges against these accused observing that former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was kept in the “dark” by Gupta, who had prima facie violated the law and the trust imposed on him on the issue of coal block allocation.

The case pertains to alleged irregularities in allocation of Thesgora-B Rudrapuri coal block in Madhya Pradesh to KSSPL. The court on October 13 last year had summoned them as accused after refusing to accept CBI’s closure report. The accused were earlier granted bail by the court.

CBI had lodged an FIR against KSSPL, its officials and other unknown persons for alleged misrepresentation of facts, including inflated net worth, to acquire the coal block.

Coal scam: Ex Coal Secy, retired public servant granted bail

Coal scam: Ex Coal Secy, retired public servant granted bail
Coal scam: Ex Coal Secy, retired public servant granted bail

Former Coal Secretary H. C. Gupta and retired public servant L. S. Janoti were today granted bail by a special court in a coal scam case pertaining to alleged irregularities in the allocation of Bander coal block in Maharashtra.

Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar also allowed the plea filed by counsel appearing for former Minister of State for Coal Santosh Bagrodia, who was also summoned as accused in the case, on exemption from personal appearance on health grounds for today only.

Senior advocate N Hariharan, who appeared for Bagrodia, told the court that his client, who was around 75-years-old, was suffering from ailment and that the doctor had advised him rest.

He, however, assured the court that Bagrodia would appear before it on the next date of hearing.

The court allowed Bagrodia’s plea and fixed the matter for further hearing on September 8.

During the hearing, Gupta and Janoti, who were summoned as accused in the case on July 21, appeared before the court and moved their respective bail pleas.

The court granted bail to Gupta and Janoti, a former section officer in Coal Ministry who retired from the Ministry of Home Affairs on May 31 this year, on a personal bond of one lakh each with one surety of the like amount.

These three were summoned as accused in the case in which CBI had earlier charge sheeted Rajya Sabha MP Vijay Darda, his son Devendra Darda, AMR Iron and Steel Pvt Ltd and its Director Manoj Jayaswal.

The court had summoned them as accused after taking cognisance of alleged offences punishable under sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy) read with 420 (cheating), 409 (criminal breach of trust by public servant) under the IPC and under relevant provisions of the Prevention of Corruption (PC) Act.

In its January 30 order, the court had observed that Bagrodia, Gupta and Janoti had allegedly committed criminal misconduct and facilitated accused firm AMR Iron and Steel Pvt Ltd in unlawfully obtaining the coal block.

The court had earlier granted bail to Vijay Darda, Devendra and Jayaswal after they had appeared before it.

The charge sheet was filed against the accused on May 27 last year for alleged the offences under IPC and PC Act.

Regarding AMR Iron and Steel Pvt Ltd, CBI had claimed in its FIR that the firm, in its application form for allocation of coal blocks, had “fraudulently” concealed the fact that its group firms had previously been allocated five coal blocks.

 

Coal scam:Special Court summons ex-coal secy as accused

Coal scam:Special Court summons ex-coal secy as accused
Coal scam:Special Court summons ex-coal secy as accused

A special court today summoned former Coal Secretary H C Gupta, Delhi-based firm Pushp Steels and Mining Pvt Ltd and its director Atul Jain as accused for their alleged involvement in a coal block allocation scam case.

Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar took cognizance of the charge sheet filed by CBI in the case pertaining to alleged irregularities in allocation of a coal block to the accused firm in Chhattisgarh.

The court summoned them as accused for August 3.

CBI had filed the charge sheet in the case on May 20 this year for alleged offences under section 120B (criminal conspiracy) read with section 409 (criminal breach of trust by public servant) of IPC and under relevant provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Pushp Steels and Mining Pvt Ltd was allotted Brahmapuri coal block in Chhattisgarh on the recommendation by the Screening Committee for its proposed Sponge Iron End Use Project in Durg district.

An FIR was lodged against Pushp Steels and Mining Pvt Ltd and others in April 2013.

The agency had alleged that the firm had misrepresented facts while applying for the coal block.

The agency had conducted searches at various places in Delhi, Ghaziabad and Raipur in Chhattisgarh at the offices and factory of the firm as well as the residential premises of its Directors Atul Jain and Sanjay Jain.

It had alleged that the company got mining lease on the basis of recommendation from the Chhattisgarh government despite having no experience and lacking enough capital required for starting mining operations.

CBI had earlier claimed that the allocation of Brahmapuri coal block was done on the basis of alleged false information that the firm possessed an iron ore mining lease, when it had none.

“It was further alleged that the company did not have any experience in steel manufacturing and the net worth of the group companies/firms was around Rs 3.01 crores which was insignificant,” it had said.

Coal scam: Have given records to competent authority

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Wednesday told a special court that they have furnished necessary records before competent authority for considering granting sanction to prosecute the public servants allegedly involved in a coal scam case relating to allocation of blocks to Navbharat Power Pvt Ltd (NPPL).

The agency told Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar that they were awaiting response from the competent authority on the issue.“It is submitted (by CBI) that the necessary records have been submitted to the competent authority for considering according sanction to prosecute public servants. The same is awaited,” the court said and fixed the matter for further hearing on 12 March.
The agency was earlier directed by the court to further investigate the matter in which it had filed a charge sheet against NPPL, its managing director and vice-chairman Harish Chandra Prasad and chairman P. Trivikrama Prasad.
CBI had told the court that further probe in the case was going on in pursuance of the order passed by the court. The court, in its order passed on 12 November, 2014 had said that the acts of former Coal Secretary H.C. Gupta and two other public servants overlooking alleged misrepresentation by NPPL for acquiring coal block in Rampia in Odisha prima facie amounted to criminal misconduct.
The court had differed from CBI’s conclusion that no malafide intention was found on the part of public servants, saying it was prima facie clear that decision of allocating coal block to NPPL was taken by officers of ministry of coal (MOC) and screening committee without keeping public interest in mind.
The court had also asked CBI to place before sanctioning authority the records of the case for considering the issue of according sanction to prosecute public servants involved for the offence under the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Court asks CBI to further probe against ex-coal secy actions

The acts of former Coal Secretary and two other government officials overlooking the misrepresentation by Navbharat Power Pvt Ltd (NPPL) for getting coal block prima facie amounts to criminal misconduct, a special court on Wednesday said, directing the to further investigate the case.

The court differed from the investigating officer’s conclusion that no malafide intention was found on the part of government officials, saying it was prima facie clear that the decision of allocating coal block to NPPL was taken by the Ministry of Coal (MOC) officers and the Screening Committee without keeping public interest in mind.