ibnlive » Politics

Coalgate: Norm violated by government to favour Naveen Jindal


Bhupendra Chaubey,CNN-IBN
Sep 06, 2012 at 11:20pm IST

New Delhi: Another Congress MP is in the eye of the storm over the alleged coal blocks allocation scam. After Vijay Darda, another Congress MP, Naveen Jindal is under scanner over coalgate. While an FIR has already been filed against one Congress MP, the other is now beginning to face the heat.

Documents accessed by CNN-IBN have shown how Jindal Steel and Power got a coal block. Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Hansraj Ahir has alleged that the coal block was given to Jindal in violation of government guidelines.

Jindal Steel and Power got a coal field in February 2009 with reserves of 1500 million metric tones.

The entire Monsoon Session of Parliament has been wiped out over coalgate, but it now seems that the entire battle may not be just about the 142 coal blocks allocated between 2006 and 2009.

The documents show how Congress MP Naveen Jindal was given a coal block while the government Navratna Coal India Ltd was refused and asked to go to far off Mozambique in search of coal blocks.

On February 27, 2009, two private companies got huge coal blocks. Both the blocks were in Odhisha and while one was over 300 mega metric tones, the other was over 1500 mega metric tones. Combined worth of these blocks was well over Rs 2 lakh crore and these blocks were meant for the liquification of coal.

One of these blocks was awarded to Jindal. His firm Jindal Steel and Power was the company which was allotted the Talcher coal field in Angul in Odisha in 2009, well after the self-imposed cut off date by the Centre on allocation of coal blocks.

While Jindal's firm got blocks worth several thousand crores, Coal India Ltd, a government Navratna company, was struggling to get coal blocks for itself. Despite several requests through letters, Coal India was asked to go to far off Mozambique in search of coal blocks.

According to experts, perhaps it is more profitable for companies to mine coal in far off places like Mozambique. But then, weren’t coal blocks being given away for a song back home? Why was Coal India asked to go to Mozambique while private players were being given blocks here? These are tough questions whose answers could be even more embarrassing for the government.

Latest

More from this section