CBI registers case in coalgate against Congress MP and minister brother

Congress MP Vijay Darda and his brother, Rajendra, who is the education minister in the Maharashtra government have been named in cases registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) against five companies and their directors for deliberate misreporting of financial and technical abilities in order to corner coal fields.

Alleged irregularities in the manner of coal blocks allocation to private and state-run firms had provoked a massive political crisis, with the opposition BJP calling for the resignation of the prime minister, and paralysing parliament through noisy disruptions daily.

Darda has close association with five private firms raided yesterday for the coal blocks they had been allotted in Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh. He denies using his position to influence the allocation process followed by the government.

He told NDTV hours before the CBI began its raids that his conscience was clear. However, the cases against the Darda brothers is likely to land the Congress party in a spot of bother, even as it tries to fend off  accusations of a coal policy rooted in crony capitalism and graft.

Speaking to NDTV, Darda said last night that he was not involved in any wrongdoing and denied all allegations.

The case against Darda, his son and his brother concerns the transactions of a firm named JLD Yavatmal; in which they were directors when it was allotted coal fields.