New Delhi, July 11 (IANS) A special court here on Monday allowed the plea of New Delhi Exim Pvt. Ltd. Director Suresh Singhal to become an approver in a coal block allocation case allegedly involving former Congress MP Naveen Jindal and others.
Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Special Judge Bharat Parashar permitted Singhal to become approver and asked the agency to further investigate the matter.
“…I thus allow the application moved by the applicant Suresh Singhal seeking pardon and to make him an approver subject to his making full and true disclosure of whole of the circumstances as are within his knowledge relating to the offence and to every other person concerned whether as an abettor or principle in the commission of offences being tried over here,” the court said.
The court said that Singhal’s application and statement cannot be stated to be exculpatory in nature observing that Singhal has chosen to disclose all the facts which were within his knowledge as regard the role played by him in the entire transaction of transfer of money from Jindal to then Union Minister Dasari Narayana Rao and also of other co-accused.
However, the court said that “it cannot enter into an analysis of the probative value of the facts disclosed by applicant Singhal or as to what weight can be assigned to his statements” and fixed August 10 for further hearing in the case.
The court in April found prima facie evidence against industrialist and senior Congress leader Jindal, former Minister of State for Coal Dasari Narayana Rao, former Jharkhand Chief Minister Madhu Koda and others in a case related to the allocation of Jharkhand’s Amarkonda Murgadangal coal block to Jindal Steel and Gagan Sponge.
However, Jindal, Rao, Koda and others denied the charge and sought discharge from the case.
The CBI in April 2015 filed a charge sheet against Jindal, Koda, Rao and former Coal Secretary H.C. Gupta, apart from Singhal, Jindal Realty Director Rajeev Jain, Gagan Sponge Directors Girish Kumar Juneja and R.K. Saraf, Sowbhagya Media’s Managing Director K. Ramakrishna and chartered accountant Gyan Swaroop Garg.
Five private companies — four based in Delhi and one in Hyderabad — were also named in the charge sheet. They are Jindal Steel and Power Ltd., Gagan Sponge Iron Pvt. Ltd., Jindal Reality Pvt. Ltd., New Delhi Exim Pvt. Ltd. and Sowbhagya Media Ltd.