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Sand mine auction: Narang Commission didn’t call contractor who pumped in money

The Narang Commission was investigating the records of M/s Rajbir Enterprises with regard to the successful bids for the two mines of Saidpur Khurd and Mehadipur in which two former employees of Rana Gurjit Singh, Amit Bahadur and Kulwinder Paul Singh, had emerged as the highest bidders.

Written by Man Aman Singh Chhina | Chandigarh |
April 11, 2018 4:39:11 am

The Justice J S Narang Commission of Inquiry, which probed the sand mine bids of two former employees of former minister Rana Gurjit Singh and the role Rajbir Enterprises, did not call Gurinder Singh, an irrigation contractor who had invested money for the bids, for questioning even as several persons who funded the bids were required to appear before the Commission.

The Commission, which began its inquiry in June 2017, was investigating the records of M/s Rajbir Enterprises with regard to the successful bids for the two mines of Saidpur Khurd and Mehadipur in which two former employees of Rana Gurjit Singh, Amit Bahadur and Kulwinder Paul Singh, had emerged as the highest bidders.

While the Commission’s report states it recorded statements of all depositors and investors of Rajbir Enterprises, Gurinder Singh, who had loaned Rs 5 crore to one Jatin Garg for investment, and whose name figures in the report, was not called for making a statement.

Garg, however, was called to make a statement before the Commission along with relevant bank records.

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The report, which was tabled in the Vidhan Sabha during the recently concluded budget session, however, includes the name of Gurinder Singh along with Jatin Garg.

The Commission’s report also makes a mention of the HDFC bank statement of Gurinder Singh from April 3, 2017 to June 30, 2017, which makes it clear that the Commission knew of the trail of money coming from the irrigation contractor and yet did not deem it fit to question him.

Gurinder was a contractor in the irrigation department when it was headed by Rana Gurjit Singh as the minister.

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The Indian Express had reported on December 31 that Gurinder Singh had partially funded the firm Rajbir Enterprises, which had funded the sand mine bids of Amit Bahadur and Kulwinder Paul Singh.

While the Narang Commission concluded its inquiry on August 8, 2017, the contractor was booked a few days later on charges of having caused a loss of crores to state exchequer through illegal means and was finally arrested in December 2017.

When contacted, Justice J S Narang said the report was now with the Punjab government and since it had accepted the report, all questions must be directed towards them. However, when pointed out that Gurinder Singh was not called for questioning, Justice Narang said, “Gurinder did not deposit the money. He lent it to somebody.

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I did not require to call Gurinder Singh at all. I had to call the person who had deposited the money and he was called. This is not an issue at all,” he said.

Rajbir Enterprises had been set up by two persons, Sahil Singla and Sanjit Randhawa, and Jatin Garg, the person in whose account the contractor deposited the money, is a cousin of Sahil Singla.

The Narang commission had recommended the cancellation of the provisional acceptance of bids of Amit Bahadur and Kulwainder Paul Singh and the same has been accepted by the state government.

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First published on: 11-04-2018 at 04:39:11 am

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