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Coal scam: 2 Union Ministers oppose CBI move to close case

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Two Union Ministers, Prakash Javadekar and Hansraj Ahir, today protested in a special against CBI's move to close a coal allocation case, allegedly involving Ltd (PIL) and others, in which he was the complainant.

The plea was jointly filed by Javadekar, Human Resource Development Minister and Ahir, the Minister of State in the Ministry of Chemicals and Fertilizers, on whose complaint the Central Vigilance Commission had started its proceedings.

Both the ministers sought the court's direction to reject CBI's closure report filed in the case and direct the probe agency to further investigate the matter and file a supplementary charge sheet in the case.

Special Judge Parashar asked the counsel for both the leaders to supply the copy of protest petition to the prosecutors V K Sharma and and investigating officer and put up the matter for consideration on November 2.

The protest petition alleged that the company, PIL, had deliberately misrepresented facts to the 35th Screening Committee in connivance with other accused to get the coal block and investigation was done on the same lines as claimed by the accused.

The petition of Javadekar and Ahir came in response to the court's earlier notice asking them if they wanted to submit anything on the final report in the case.

The had earlier issued notices to the two ministers after CVC Director Sanjay Agarwal had informed it that CVC was not a complainant in the matter and had no role to play in the case and it was these two leaders on whose complaint the Commission had started its proceedings.

It had said that before accepting CBI's closure report, the was duty bound to issue notice to the complainant.

The court, however, had clarified that Javadekar and Ahir

need not appear in person to make any submissions unless they desired to do so themselves.

It had earlier directed the CVC to clarify its stand on CBI's closure report in the case in which an FIR was lodged on the basis of CVC's reference.

An FIR was registered against PIL and others in connection with alleged irregularities in allocation of Chhattisgarh's Fatehpur coal block.

The court had earlier said the case was registered on the basis of CVC's reference, but after completing its probe, had filed a closure report saying no incriminating evidence had come on record warranting prosecution of any accused.

According to CBI, the Fatehpur coal block was allocated jointly to PIL and another firm by 35th Screening Committee.

The FIR was lodged against PIL, its three officials, some officials of the Coal Ministry and others on the charge that the firm had misrepresented its net worth while applying for the block.

The FIR was registered under sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy) read with 420 (cheating) of the IPC and under the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

CBI had alleged in its FIR that while the company had misrepresented facts relating to its net worth, the screening committee had deliberately not followed the guidelines and show undue favour to it.

First Published: Tue, October 18 2016. 19:48 IST