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`Awaiting sanction to try two govt servants`, says CBI


CBI on Tuesday told a special court that it has not received any communication from the competent authority on the issue of grant of sanction to prosecute two senior public servants in a coal block allocation scam case.

Senior public prosecutor Sanjay Kumar told the court that CBI had sent necessary records to the competent authority on August 31 for considering according sanction to prosecute two government servants, K S Kropha, then joint secretary in the Ministry of Coal (MoC), and K C Samria, then Director (CA-I), MoC for alleged offences under Prevention of Corruption Act.

"It has been submitted that necessary records have been sent to the competent authority for considering according of sanction to prosecute two public servants K S Kropha and K C Samria. No communication has been received on the same yet," Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar noted in his order. "Put up the matter for filing of progress report of further investigation on January 6, 2016," the court said. The court had on August 5 directed the agency to conduct further probe in the case allegedly involving Vikash Metal and Power Ltd (VMPL).

It had asked CBI to conduct further probe in the case saying prima facie "active collusion" was found on part of the public servants for not verifying the claims made by the firm. The court's order had come in the case in which CBI had filed a supplementary final report on April 7, this year after the court had last year refused to accept the closure report and directed the agency to further investigate the matter. The case pertains to alleged irregularities in allocation of Moira and Madhujore (North and South) coal blocks in West Bengal to VMPL.

In the supplementary final report, CBI had chargesheeted Vikash Patni, Managing Director of VMPL, Anand Mallick, its authorised signatory and the company for alleged offences under sections 120B (criminal conspiracy) and 420 (cheating) of IPC. Regarding other directors of the firm or public servants involved in coal block allocation to VMPL, it was stated by CBI that no offence was found to have been committed by them. CBI had said though lapses were found on Kropha's part, no criminality was found to have been committed by him and thus regular departmental action (RDA) for major penalty has been recommended by it.

Regarding H C Gupta, then Coal Secretary, CBI had said lapses in processing the application were found on his part also but since he had retired from government service, no action was being recommended. The case involved VMPL and its officials in which they are accused of making false claims relating to land allocation to get undue advantage in coal block allocation. The FIR in the case was registered in September 2012. CBI, in its FIR, had alleged that VMPL had wrongly claimed that it had been allocated 300 acres of land in Begusarai in Bihar by the Bihar Area Development Authority.

It had found that land was de-allocated and directors of the firm had failed to inform the screening committee members about it, CBI had claimed.

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