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Coal scam: one down, 51 to go

The first set of convictions in the coal block allocation scam came on Monday, within 14 months of the court taking cognisance of the charge-sheet filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation. There are 51 more cases pending in various stages of investigation or trial in the infamous coal scam.

BJP leaders and now Union Ministers, Prakash Javadekar and Hansraj Ahir, had first filed a complaint with the Central Vigilance Commission seeking investigations into coal block allocations during the UPA regime. Subsequently, the CBI initiated investigations.

In August 2012, the Comptroller and Auditor-General (CAG) had pegged the loss to the exchequer at Rs. 1.86 lakh crore due to irregularities in the allocation of coal blocks. The report stated that till March 2011, the government had allocated 194 blocks for captive mining, of which 142 were unexplored.

A month later, the CBI booked the first set of five cases against the companies on allegations of conspiracy to secure allocation of coal blocks. Congress MP Vijay Darda was named as an accused in one of the cases.

Since then, the agency has registered 52 cases pertaining to the coal block allocations scam. Among the other prominent accused in these cases were former Minister of State for Coal Dasari Narayan Rao, industrialist Naveen Jindal, former Jharkhand Chief Minister Madhu Koda. In the course of its investigations, the CBI also recorded former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s statement.

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Printable version | Apr 14, 2021 1:46:53 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/Coal-scam-one-down-51-to-go/article14180052.ece

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