New Delhi: The Comptroller and Auditor General of India
(CAG) after its fiery report on 2G spectrum does it again. This time the
draft report titled 'Performance Audit of Coal Block Allocations' says the
government has extended "undue benefits", a mind-boggling Rs 10.67 lakh
crore, to commercial entities by giving them 155 coal blocks without
auction between 2004 and 2009.
The beneficiaries include some 100 private companies, as well as some
public sector units, in industries such as power, steel and cement,
exposed a newspaper. The draft report is set to rock the UPA government
The coal ministry was with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and JMM leader
Shibu Soren during the UPA-I's tenure between 2004 and 2009.
The CAG-estimated loss figure of Rs 10.67 lakh crore at March 31, 2011
prices is six times that of its highest presumptive loss figure of Rs 1.76
lakh crore for the 2G scam.
The report has listed both private entities and public utilities as
beneficiaries of the alleged largesse. It says private firms cornered more
than Rs 4.79 lakh crore of the giveaway, while around Rs 5.88 lakh crore
went to government utilities. Significantly, most PSUs employ private
miners to extract the coal.
Among the major private sector beneficiaries are, Jindal Steel & Power
Ltd, Tata Group entities, the Anil Agarwal Group firms, Aditya Birla Group
companies, Essar Group's power ventures, Adani Group, Arcelor Mittal
India, Lanco Group, Jayaswal Neco, Electro Steel Castings Ltd, Bhushan
Power & Steel Ltd and Abhijeet Group.
While the PSU beneficiaries are NTPC, MMTC, many West Bengal government
corporations, and mines and mineral development corporations of
Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Madhya Pradesh.
PMO is involved in the scam: BJP
The BJP on Thursday has given
notice in Rajya Sabha to discuss CAG report on alleged coal scam. The
party alleged that it is a very big scam and the PMO is involved in it.
However, the Congress refuted the allegations and said that there was no
report exposes coal scam
Also read: Uproar
in Parliament over CAG report