Dilip Ray’s conviction in coal scam: Sentencing deferred to Oct 26

New Delhi: The CBI Special Court here will pass order on sentence against former Union Minister and ex-Odisha MLA Dilip Ray and five others in the Jharkhand coal scam on October 26. All of them have been convicted in the case.

The sentencing was earlier scheduled to take place today. Judge Bharat Parashar has directed for the physical presence of all convicts. The judge also ordered for taking all COVID-19 precautions.

The court had on October 6 convicted Ray, who was the Minister of State (MoS) for Coal in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government, and five others in the coal block allocation case, noting that they conspired together, beyond all reasonable doubt, to procure allocation of the coal block.

The case pertains to the allocation of 105.153 hectares of non-nationalized and abandoned coal mining area in Jharkhand’s Giridih district to Castron Technologies Limited by the 14th Screening Committee of the Ministry of Coal in 1999.

Besides Ray, two former senior officials of the Ministry of Coal — Pradip Kumar Banerjee, the then Additional Secretary and Nitya Nand Gautam, former advisor (Projects), Castron Technologies Limited and its director Mahendra Kumar Agarwalla and Castron Mining Limited have also been found guilty.

Judge Bharat Parashar of Rouse Avenue Court concluded that it is “beyond shadows of all reasonable doubts that all the convicts conspired together so as to procure allocation of a captive coal block — Brahmadiha coal block — in favour of Castron Technologies Limited.”

The court held them guilty of offences under 120-B (criminal conspiracy) 409 (criminal breach of trust) and 420 (cheating) of the Indian Penal Code and various sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

Besides this, Mahesh Kumar Agarwalla and Castron Mining Limited were also held guilty for the offence under 379 (punishment for theft) and 34 (common intention) of the Indian Penal Code.

As many as 51 witnesses were examined in the case.

(with IANS inputs)

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