From the FIR: Parakh & Co denied coal block to Hindalco, then did U-turn

Oct 17 2013, 09:12 IST
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SummaryCBI claims to have found unaccounted sum of Rs 25 crore during search at the Hindalco office.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in its FIR against industrialist Kumar Mangalam Birla has alleged that former coal secretary P C Parakh reversed the decision of the 25th screening committee to allegedly favour the chairman of the Aditya Birla Group in 2005.

CBI claims to have found an unaccounted-for sum of Rs 25 crore during its search at the Hindalco office on New Delhi’s Parliament Street. The agency, which also claimed to have found several incriminating documents, said it had informed the income-tax department about the discovery of the money late on Tuesday night.

“Enquiry... revealed that while the recommendations of screening committee were being approved by the competent authority, it received letters dated 07.05.2005 and 17.06.2005 from Kumar Mangalam Birla of M/s Hindalco Industries Ltd, requesting for allocation of Talabira II coal block, which were forwarded to the Ministry of Coal,” the CBI has said in its FIR.

According to the CBI, “Birla met Parakh, the then Secretary (Coal), during July 2005 and requested for the allocation of Talabira II coal block to Hindalco... Pursuant to these letters and the personal meeting between Parakh and Birla, Parakh, by abusing his official position as a public servant recommended the allocation of Talabira II along with Talabira III coal block to Hindalco, along with other two companies without any valid basis or change in circumstances and with the sole intention to show undue favours to Hindalco.”

Parakh, the FIR says, “ignored the considered deliberations and recommendations of the 25th screening committee of which he was the chairman. In his recommendation, the Secretary (Coal) proposed the formation of a joint venture company between Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd, Neyveli Lignite Corporation Ltd and Hindalco Industries Ltd with equity share holding of 70%, 15% and 15% respectively, which was approved by the competent authority...

“Prior to the aforesaid approval, the arrangement was discussed by Secretary (Coal) with M/s Hindalco and only after the latter’s agreement with the proposed arrangement, the file was further processed. This resulted in the satisfaction level of 81% in respect of M/s Hindalco as against 29% for M/s NLC. Due to this arrangement, the proposed power project of M/s NLC which was approved by the Ministry of Power could not take off as planned,” the FIR says.

“Thus, M/s Hindalco Industries Ltd (a private company) was favoured by Shri P C Parakh and other unknown public servants in criminal conspiracy with each other at the cost

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