Coal scam: former coal secretary H C Gupta, 2 others convicted in KSSPL case

19 May 2017


A special court in Delhi today convicted former coal secretary HC Gupta and two other officials of the coal ministry in a coal block allocation case involving Kamal Sponge Steel and Power Limited (KSSPL).

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) special court convicted Gupta and two former officials of the coal ministry KS Kropha and KC Samria, besides the accused firm KSSPL and its managing director Pawan Kumar Ahluwalia, under various charges of criminal conspiracy and provisions of Prevention of Corruption Act.

Kropha was the then joint secretary in the ministry of coal, while Samria was the then director (coal allocation-I) in the ministry.

Special court Judge Bharat Parashar, however, acquitted chartered accountant Amit Goyal of all charges in the case.

The court will deliver the order detailing the quantum of punishment on 22 May.

The court was hearing a case pertaining to alleged irregularities in the allocation of Thesgora-B Rudrapuri coal block in Madhya Pradesh to KSSPL.

The CBI had lodged an FIR accusing the company and others of allegedly misrepresenting facts, including inflated net worth, to acquire the coal block.

During the hearing, the CBI had alleged that the application filed by KSSPL for the coal block was incomplete and was supposed to be rejected by the ministry as it was not in accordance with the guidelines issued.

The accused, however, denied the allegations during the arguments.

The court had in October last year framed charges against the accused observing that former prime minister Manmohan Singh was kept in the "dark" by Gupta, who had prima facie violated the law and the trust reposed in him on the issue of coal block allocation.

Around eight different charge sheets have been filed against Gupta and proceedings are going on individually. The Supreme Court had recently dismissed his plea seeking joint trial in all these case.

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