SC summons Santosh Bagrodia before special court in coal block case




By NewsGram Staff Writer

New Delhi: Former union minister Santosh Bagrodia was asked to appear before a special CBI court in coal block allocation case by the Supreme Court on September 8.

On Monday, a bench of Justice M.B. Lokur, Justice Kurian Joseph and Justice A.K. Sikri said it will examine Bagrodia’s plea soon while declining him relief.

Santosh Bagrodia, a minister of state for coal in the Manmohan Singh ministry was summoned as an accused by the special court in a case concerning allocation of Maharashtra’s Bander coal block to AMR Iron and Steel Pvt Ltd. He had sought stay on the summons in the case on parity with the relief granted to Manmohan Singh in April this year.

Senior counsel K.K. Venugopal, appearing for the accused minister, claimed that Bagrodia was innocent and so he should be seen at par with the relief granted to Manmohan Singh in another coal block case.

The apex court on April 2 had stayed the trial court order summoning the former prime minister as accused in a case pertaining to grant of Talabira-II coal block in Odisha in 2005 to Aditya Birla group company Hindalco.

Meanwhile, CBI’s claim regarding an unaccounted cash worth Rs.25 crore seized from Hindalco’s corporate office having no connection with the coal block allocation case was brushed aside by the apex court.

The court further asked the central agency to inform it about the status of the probe into the incriminating documents and a diary which was also seized from the company’s Delhi office in October 15, 2013.

(With inputs from IANS)