Coal Scam: Delhi court convicts former MP Vijay Darda, ex-Coal Secretary HC Gupta

 Former Rajya Sabha MP Vijay Darda and ex-Coal Secretary H C Gupta were among seven people convicted by a Delhi court on Thursday in a case related to irregularities in the allocation of a coal block in Chhattisgarh.

In the 13th conviction in the coal scam, Special Judge Sanjay Bansal also convicted Darda’s son Devender Darda, two senior public servants K S Kropha and K C Samria, M/s JLD Yavatmal Energy Pvt Ltd and its Director Manoj Kumar Jayaswal.

The court held the accused guilty of criminal conspiracy (punishable under 120-B of IPC) and cheating (punishable under section 420 of IPC), and under relevant sections of Prevention of Corruption Act.

The judge will hear argument on quantum of punishment on July 18.

The court accepted the submissions made by senior Public Prosecutor A P Singh, that the CBI was able to prove its case beyond all reasonable doubts.

It had on November 20, 2014, refused to accept the CBI’s closure report in the case and directed it to conduct further probe the matter, stating that the former MP had “misrepresented” facts in letters written to then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who then held the Coal portfolio.

The court had said that Vijay Darda, the Chairman of Lokmat Group, had done so to get the Fatehpur (East) coal block in Chhattisgarh allotted to JLD Yavatmal Energy Pvt Ltd.

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