Coal Ministry rejects Team Anna charge

The move to introduce competitive bidding is to make the selection process demonstrably more transparent,” the Coal Ministry said in a statement.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published:May 28, 2012 2:33 am

A day after Team Anna alleged that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had extended “pecuniary benefits to private parties” when he held the charge of the Coal Ministry,the ministry on Sunday said blocks were allocated in an “equitable and fair manner”. It,however,did not specifically mention the Team Anna’s allegation against the Prime Minister.

Arguing that the allotment of coal blocks was never looked upon as a potential source of generating revenue,the ministry said there has never been any allegations against it. “The process of allocation of blocks was equitable,fair and just which is borne out of the fact that there has never been any serious allegation against the working of the screening committee.

The move to introduce competitive bidding is to make the selection process demonstrably more transparent,” the Coal Ministry said in a statement.

Team Anna had picked up portions of a draft CAG report to make charges against the Prime Minister when the ministry was with him. The CAG has in a preliminary assessment has estimated a loss of Rs 10.67 lakh crore was caused to the nation due to a coal scam and which led to uproar during Parliament’s Budget session.

Dismissing allegations of impropriety,the ministry said the Screening Committee concerned ministries of the Central government and the coal companies.

“The allocation of coal blocks was never looked upon as a potential source for generating revenue for the Central government ….Hence the question of maximising revenue does not arise at all,” the ministry observed in its statement.

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