Maharashtra Coal Block Allocation: Former Secretary HC Gupta Gets 3 Yrs in Jail

Delhi court awarded three-year jail term to ex-Coal Secretary HC Gupta in a coal scam case.

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A Delhi court on Monday, 8 August, awarded three-year jail term to former Coal Secretary HC Gupta in a coal scam case related to irregularities in allocation of a coal block in Maharashtra, a lawyer associated with the case said.

Special Judge Arun Bhardwaj also awarded two year imprisonment to former joint-Secretary in the Ministry of Coal (MoC), KS Kropha in the case and imposed a fine of Rs 50,000, while Gupta was asked to pay a fine of Rs one lakh.

The court had convicted both for criminal conspiracy, criminal breach of trust, cheating and corruption in the case related to allocation of Lohara East coal block.

The court, meanwhile, awarded four year jail term to Mukesh Gupta, the director of convicted company, Grace Industries Ltd (GIL), for criminal conspiracy and cheating and imposed a fine of Rs two lakh on him, while the company was also directed to pay a fine of Rs two lakh separately.

Both were convicted for criminal conspiracy and cheating.

The trial of the case was conducted by senior advocate RS Cheema, Deputy Legal Advisor for the CBI Sanjay Kumar and senior public prosecutor AP Singh.

HC Gupta was earlier convicted in three other coal scam cases and his appeal against those convictions is pending before the Delhi High Court. He is currently on bail along with other convict persons in the case.


The Case

According to the Central Bureau of investigation (CBI), between 2005 and 2011, the accused persons hatched a criminal conspiracy and cheated MoC, Government of India by dishonestly and fraudulently inducing the MoC to allocate 'Lohara East Coal Block' in favour of GIL on the basis of false information about net worth, capacity, equipments and status of procurement and installation of plant.

The CBI also stated that the company, in its application, claimed its net worth as Rs 120 crore whereas its own net-worth was only Rs 3.3 crore, and that the company also falsified its existing capacity as 1,20,000 TPA against 30,000 TPA.

The Supreme Court had on 25 August 2014 cancelled the entire allocations of coal blocks.

This is the 11th conviction in coal scam cases secured by prosecution.

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Topics:  Coal Scam   CBI   conspiracy 

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