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CBI registers two FIRs in coal scam

BS Reporters/New Delhi 16 Oct 12 | 12:37 AM

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday conducted raids at 16 places across seven cities and registered cases against Green Infrastructure Private Limited and Kamal Sponge Steel and Power Limited in the ongoing coal block allocation scandal.

With the two FIRs in the coal scam, the number of cases against companies that were allotted coal blocks is now nine. The raids were carried out in Hyderabad, Satna, Secunderabad, Vishakhapatnam, Jaipur, Rourkela and Delhi.

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According to CBI officials, Kamal Sponge Steel and Power Limited was allotted Thesgudda (B) Rudrapuri coal block in Madhya Pradesh in 2008. CBI officials said they have found that the company had submitted unaudited balance sheet to misrepresent the net worth of the company. Senior CBI officials said that at the time of the allocation of the coal block, the company had audited balance sheet but it chose to present the unaudited balance sheet before the screening committee.

Senior CBI officials have named Pavan Kumar Ahluwalia, Kamaljeet Singh Ahluwalia and Prashant Kumar Ahluwalia — the three directors of the Satna (Madhya Pradesh)-based company — in the FIR. The company had inflated its capacity to set up an end-use plant by 25 per cent, in the request for recommendation to the steel ministry, they said.

According to sources, Green Infrastructure has also been named in the FIR for inflating its net worth by showing an agreement with Malaysia-based MMC Berhard Malaysia. Investigations revealed that Green Infrastructure had net worth of Rs 2 lakh, but it attached net worth of Rs 4,600 crore of the Malaysian company. The Delhi-based company was allotted Fatehpur (East) coal block in Chhattisgarh in 2008.

CBI has named M S Ramkrishna, Yugandhar Meka, Allure Raju Sitarama, Vemuri Ramesh, Prasad N and Parthasarthy Commandur — directors of Green Infrastructure — in the FIR. Ramkrishna is also a director in Karvy Group.

“CBI found that the agreement between the two companies was just an expression of interest (EoI) and it was not a formal legal agreement. Green Infrastructure later changed its name to Athena Infra Projects Pvt Limited," said a source.

Meanwhile, Karvy Group, a Hyderabad-based financial services firm, clarified that it was not a promoter of Green Infrastructure. “Karvy Group is not a promoter of Green infrastructure Pvt Ltd. Also, we would like to inform that one of the Promoter-Director of Karvy, Mr M S Ramkrishna, has association with Green Infrastructure in his personal capacity," Karvy said in a statement.

The CBI has filed an FIR under section 120 (B), 420 of IPC and 13(1) (D) and 13 (1) (2) of Prevention of Corruption Act (PCA). The new FIRs pertain to coal block allocation to these companies during 2006-09. CBI has charged them for forgery and cheating while applying for coal blocks.

This is the third such raid by the agency, which had registered five cases on September 4 against JLD Yavatmal, JAS Infrastructure, AMR Iron and Steel, Vini Iron and Steel and Navbharat Power on charges of misrepresentation of facts and criminal conspiracy.

A similar action by CBI was also taken against Nagpur-based Grace Industries Limited and Kolkata-based Vikash Metals and Power Limited when the agency registered two cases against these companies on September 22. The agency has charged these companies for not providing complete details before the screening committee to get undue advantage during coal block allocation.

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