Tourism Minister Subodh Kant Sahai has denied having any links to a coal block of SKS Ispat and Power that the government has decided to cancel.

Mr. Sahai’s media adviser in a statement said the minister had never made any recommendation to anyone for allocation of the Rawanbhara coal block in Madhya Pradesh to SKS Ispat. The block was allocated to the firm, in which neither Sahai or his brother held any stake, on May 29, 2007.

Dismissing media reports, the statement said the minister had written to the Prime Minister on February 5, 2008 for allocation of coal blocks in Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh “in order to bring investment in the state of Jharkhand.”

“The Minister had not written any letter for the Rawanbhara Coal block situated in Madhya Pradesh and the block was allocated to SKS Ispat on May 29, 2007,” the statement said. “Sahai and his brother do not hold any stake nor have promoted the company.”

The statement said Mr. Sahai’s name was “needlessly” dragged in reports on de-allocation of the Rawanbhara coal block.

The government, on recommendation of an inter—ministerial group (IMG), on September 18 decided to de—allocate the Rawanbhara coal block given to SKS Ispat.

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