NEW DELHI : The Central Bureau of Investigation is proceeding against Vedanta group chairman Anil Agarwal in a Preliminary Enquiry registered last month in the disinvestment of the public sector Hindustan Zinc Limited in 2002 during the NDA regime to his firm Sterlite India that was merged into his another company Sesa Goa early this year.

The case relates to sale of 26 per cent stakes at a low price of Rs 445 crore to Sterlite India in the alleged undervaluation of the company’s mines. The Vedanta Group had also acquired a majority stake in Bharat Aluminium Company Ltd (BALCO) around the same time from the government.

Also listed in the PE are the unnamed officials of the Mines and Disinvestment Ministries.

The deal had stipulated the government to release further stakes in Hindustan Zinc to Sterlite, but only 18.92% shares were sold to it in 2003 in Rs 323.88 crore while the government continues to hold 29.5% stake. Sterlite, however, became the major stake holder by acquiring 20 per cent of the states through an open offer to the public shareholders.

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Free Press Journal