New Delhi, Sep 14 (IANS) The Competition Commission of India on Thursday slapped more than Rs 11.81 crore penalty on 10 coal and sand transportation companies for contravening the Competition Law.
“The parties have been directed to cease and desist from indulging in anti-competitive conduct. A total penalty of over Rs 11,81 crore imposed on the 10 parties. Penalty was also imposed on the eight officials of the said parties who were found to be liable in terms of Section 48 of the Act,” according to a statement.
Coal India’s one of the subsidiaries, Western Coalfields Limited, had approached the commission alleging bid-rigging by transportation companies upon noticing identical price quotes given by them in four tenders floated for coal and sand transportation.
It was alleged that the conduct of submitting identical bids at higher rates is a blatant act of bid rigging.
The Commission after hearing the parties concluded that they were in agreement to fix prices resulting in bid-rigging in the tenders floated by the coal company.
In its order, it noted that such conduct in public procurement besides defeating the tendering process has an adverse impact on the process of competition resulting in deprivation of efficient outcomes that would have followed otherwise.