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CBI coal scam affidavit: Centre may back Law Minister in SC on Tuesday

CNN-IBN
Apr 29, 2013 at 11:08pm IST

New Delhi: A day before the Supreme Court's observations on CBI's admission that its report on coal scam was seen by Law minister Ashwani Kumar, sources say that the Centre will say that both Kumar and the government did nothing wrong.

The government's stand was finalised after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh met the Attorney General on Sunday.

ALSO SEE Coal scam: PM met Attorney General on Sunday to discuss CBI's affidavit

The CBI had on Friday filed its affidavit on the coal block allocation scam report with the Supreme Court, in which agency's director Ranjit Sinha had said that the draft report was shared with Law Minister Ashwani Kumar, a charge the Congress has been rejecting. The director had also said the draft of the report was even shared with the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) and Coal Ministry officials.

"I submit that the draft (status report)of the same was shared with Law Minister as desired by him prior to its submission before the Supreme Court.... it was also shared with one joint secretary level officer each of Prime Minister's Office and Ministry of Coal as desired by them," the affidavit said.

In March, the probe agency had said in its status report that many companies were given coal blocks through false representations and that there was no rationale for allocation of the blocks. The Supreme Court had ordered the CBI not to share the report with the government. It has also asked the Centre to explain why a small group of companies were favoured.

The government is likely to say that any meeting between the CBI and the Law Ministry happened before that assurance. The CBI in its affidavit had said that Kumar and two officials in the PMO and the Coal Ministry had seen its first status report.

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