Coal ex-secretary wants to withdraw personal bond, court advises rethink

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New Delhi, Aug 16 (IANS) Former Union Coal Secretary H.C. Gupta, facing trial in many coal block allocation cases, on Tuesday moved an application in a court here, seeking to withdraw his personal bond.

His counsel said the former officer did not wish to examine any witness in his defence and intended to face the trial from jail since he was facing financial difficulties.

Gupta told Central Bureau of Investigation Special Judge Bharat Parashar that he wanted to withdraw his personal bond submitted earlier for his release on bail and also to withdraw the authorisation letter in favour of his defence counsel.

Facing trials in nine cases of coal block allocations, Gupta moved the application when the court was recording statements of defence witnesses in the case pertaining to alleged irregularities in the allocation of Thesgora-B Rudrapuri coal block in Madhya Pradesh to Kamal Sponge Steel and Power Ltd.

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After the court enquired about the reasons for moving the application, the former Coal Secretary submitted that he is facing financial difficulties even in engaging a lawyer.

The court said if he is facing financial difficulties,m he can be provided services of a lawyer from the New Delhi Legal Aid Services Authority or an amicus curiae appointed by the court on his behalf.

Though Gupta refused the court’s offer, the presiding officer gave him time to think over his application and submissions and listed the matter for Wednesday for further hearing.

After ordering the court room to be vacated by all, except the court staff, the presiding officer talked to Gupta’s wife and son, who were present there, and informed them about his application.

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Thereafter, Gupta was also called inside the court room, following which the court again asked the former officer to rethink his plea.



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