Former prime minister has case against him under corruption and breach of trust
GN Bureau | March 25, 2015
Former prime minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday moved the Supreme Court against the order of a trial court that has summoned him as accused in a coal scam case. Similarly, industrialist Kumar Mangalam Birla has also filed a petition in the apex court.
Singh, along with five others including Birla and the former coal secretary PC Parakh were issued summons on March 12 by a special CBI court in a case involving the allocation of Odisha's Talabira coal blocks in 2005 to Hindalco, a Birla group company.
A special CBI Judge summoned the six accused to appear before him on April 8, for alleged offences punishable under Sections 120B (criminal conspiracy) and 409 (criminal breach of trust by public servant, or by banker, merchant or agent) of the IPC and under the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act (PCA).
The court summoned the former prime minister despite the CBI filing a closure report and telling the court that there was no prosecutable evidence against him.
The court had said that on the face of it, there was enough evidence to summon these five persons. The maximum sentence for criminal breach of trust is life imprisonment.
Hindalco had denied using any unlawful or inappropriate means for securing the allocation of the coal block. The case in the trial court pertains to the allotment of Talabira II and Talabira III coalfields in Odisha to a joint venture between Hindalco, Neyveli Lignite Corp. Ltd (NLC) and Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd in 2005.
Last December, a special court had ordered the CBI to examine Singh and his statement was recorded in January.
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