A special CBI court on Wednesday held former Jharkhand Chief Minister Madhu Koda, former Coal Secretary HC Gupta, former Jharkhand Chief Secretary Ashok Kumar Basu and one other person guilty of criminal conspiracy in the multi-crore coal blocks allocation scam.
Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar held Koda and others guilty of corruption and irregularities in connection with allocation of Rajhara North coal block in Jharkhand in January, 2007 to Kolkata-based Vini Iron and Steel Udyog Ltd (VISUL).
The firm VISUL has also been held guilty. However, its director Vaibhav Tulsyan, public servants Basant Kumar Bhattacharya and Bipin Bihari Singh and chartered accountant Navin Kumar Tulsyan have been acquitted of all charges.
The guilty stand convicted under sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy) read with 420 (cheating) and 409 (criminal breach of trust by public servants) of the Indian Penal Code and under the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.
The arguments on quantum of sentence will be heard tomorrow.
The court found that although the Jharkhand government and Steel Ministry did not recommend VISUL's case for coal block allocation, the 36th Screening Committee recommended the block for allocation to the accused firm.
The CBI has said that Koda, Basu and others had conspired in favour of VISUL.
HC Gupta, who had retired in year 2008 had chaired the committee which cleared the firm’s name
Gupta also stands convicted in an earlier case pertaining to corruption in allocation of coal block in Madhya Pradesh.