Free Press Journal

Coal scam: CBI seeks court’s nod to place additional documents



New Delhi: CBI today sought permission of a special court to place on record several additional documents in a coal blocks allocation case allegedly involving Jharkhand Ispat Pvt Ltd (JSPL) and two of its directors. CBI prosecutor filed an application under the provision of CrPC seeking to place on record certain additional documents, which are also being relied upon by them, besides copy of the statement of one of the prosecution witnesses.

The court asked the agency to supply the copy of its plea to the defence counsel and asked them to file their replies. “Copy of the application has been supplied. The said application shall be decided separately upon furnishing of reply. Put up on April 20 for filing reply to the application under section 173(5) CrPC moved by CBI,” Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar said.

The court also disposed of a plea moved by accused R S Rungta, director of JIPL, seeking several documents from the agency. During the arguments on the plea, the agency said they have no objection in supplying some of the documents sought by accused. However, it also told the court that some of the documents could only be inspected by the defence counsel in its office.

The court, however, clarified that no copy of any of the documents, if so inspected, shall be supplied to the accused without its prior permission. The court had yesterday disposed of the plea of CBI on admission and denial of documents by the accused.

CBI, in its plea under section 294 of the CrPC (no formal proof of certain documents), had said that the accused may be called upon to admit or deny various documents to curtail the necessity of examining all prosecution witnesses.

The court had on March 16 framed charges against three accused — JIPL and its directors R C Rungta and R S Rungta, for alleged offences of criminal conspiracy, cheating, forgery of valuable security, forgery for the purpose of cheating and using a forged document as genuine. They have been accused of securing allotment of North Dhadu coal block in Jharkhand allegedly on the basis of false and forged documents.

Besides the three, two private persons – Ramabatar Kedia and Naresh Mahto – were summoned as accused in the case but both of them died and the proceedings against them were abated by the court. In its chargesheet, CBI has alleged that it had found in the probe that JIPL had “grossly misrepresented” a number of aspects before the Ministries of Steel and Coal to inflate their claim, thereby inducing Coal Ministry officers and the screening committee to allocate the coal block to them.