3 more FIRs in Coal scam: Bank Boss also Embroiled: FPJ Report

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RAIDS conducted in Mumbai, Delhi and Raipur

New Delhi : The Central Bureau of Investigation on Tuesday registered three more FIRs in the multi-crore coal block allocation scam, involving a Chhattisgarh private company, its promoters and members of the government’s screening committee that recommended its case. The agency also raided premises in Mumbai, Raigarh, Raipur and Delhi. With this, the number of cases registered so far rose to 27.

The agency has also initiated probe into the role of the arrested Syndicate Bank chairman and managing director S K Jain in helping out the companies like Prakash Industries and Bhushan Steel named in the coal scam that had taken loan of Rs.120 cr and Rs.100 cr respectively from the Syndicate Bank as both were trying to settle the outstanding loan by bribing Jain who was arrested with eight others on Saturday for taking bribes. Jain is accused of enhancing the credit limits of these companies, bypassing the rules and regulations.

CBI chief Ranjit Sinha has, in fact, ordered an internal inquiry against his own officers probing Jain’s bribery scandal for allowing Neeraj Singhal, vice-chairman and managing director of Bhushan Steel, to escape from his bungalow in Delhi on Saturday despite his explicit order to arrest him. Apart from Singhal, middleman Purshottam Lal Totlani is also evading arrest.

Prakash Industries was charge-sheeted in March in the coal scam while Bhushan Steel”s coal block was de-allocated in September 2012 for not exploring its captive mine within time limit set at the time of allocation. Prakash Industries CMD Ved Prakash Agarwal was among those arrested along with Syndicate Bank”s Jain on Saturday.

The latest cases registered are against M/s SKS Ispat and Power Ltd, its promoter directors Anil Gupta and Deepak Gupta, and members of the 35th screening committee in the allocation of Fatehpur, Vijay Central and Rawanwara coal blocks. The charges include criminal conspiracy, cheating and criminal misconduct under Sec 120B read with Sec 420 of IPC and Sec 13(1)(d) and 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

( Source: A report by FPJ Bureau, August 06, 2014) . Report first published in Free Press Journal.

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