A special court of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Monday sentenced former coal secretary H C Gupta and other former officials to 2 years in prison. Earlier on May 19, Gupta had been convicted by the special CBI court in the coal block allocation case. Indian Express had reported that two other top bureaucrats and top brass of the company, who had received the coal block had also been convicted by the court. It must be noted that this was the third such conviction in as many judgements in the cases of coal scams. According to IE, H C Gupta has also been accused in various other coal scam cases. On May 19, 2017, Special Judge of the CBI court, Bharat Parashar had also convicted K S Kropha, former joint secretary of the coal ministry and K C Samria, who was the director at the time of the scam in the case involving ‘irregularities’ in the Thesgora-B Rudrapuri coal block allocation in Madhya Pradesh to Kamal Sponge Steel and Power Ltd.
The Special CBI Court, however also granted bail to HC Gupta, K S Kropha and K C Samria on a personal bond of Rs 1 lakh to one surety of like amount. The CBI court also granted bail to Pawan Kumar Ahluwalia, Managing director of the KSSPL.
It must be noted that Gupta, Kropha and Samria had been convicted on the charges of criminal conspiracy under the Indian Penal Code and criminal misconduct by a civil servant under the PC act. However, according to the Indian Express, Gupta had been acquitted of the charge of criminal breach of trust under the Indian Penal Code. The special CBI court had also convicted Pawan Kumar Ahluwalia, Managing director of the KSSPL. The CBI had alleged, during its hearing of the case that the KSSPL-filed application for the coal block had been incomplete and since it was not according to the issued guidelines, it had to be rejected.