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On probe trail, Karnataka finds IAS officer link to power firm

The flat was found to be owned by PSK Finance Solutions, a firm run by senior Karnataka IAS officer Kapil Mohan’s family.

Written by Johnson T A | Bengaluru |
Updated: October 25, 2015 6:11:55 am

In August this year, the Karnataka CID recovered Rs 4.37 crore in cash and over 2.5 kg of gold and diamonds, apart from share certificates for 133 companies and documents linked to nearly two dozen properties, in Bengaluru, Delhi and Noida, from a flat in an upmarket locality here. The flat was found to be owned by PSK Finance Solutions, a firm run by senior Karnataka IAS officer Kapil Mohan’s family.

Investigations have now shown that firms linked to Mohan received loans from at least one company, Dishaa Power Corporation Pvt Ltd, which was allotted contracts by state-run Karnataka Renewable Energy Development Ltd (KREDL), headed by Mohan between 2012 and 2013.

Mohan was appointed managing director under the then BJP government. He is currently principal secretary in the youth empowerment and sports department.

A Bengaluru firm, Dishaa Power got KREDL contracts for multiple small hydro projects, for generation of 35 MW. Dishaa Power’s director Naveen Prabhudev Patil and wife Usha Patil, in turn, deposited Rs 1.75 crore in PSK Finance Solutions Pvt Ltd, linked to Mohan.

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This is part of the declaration by Mohan’s father Naresh Mohan, a director at PSK Finance Solutions, to the Registrar of Companies for 2013-14.

Further, in March this year, PSK Finance Solutions allotted shares valued at Rs 1.25 crore to Gemini Shares and Stocks Private Limited, where Dishaa Power’s Naveen Patil was a director as well. PSK has claimed that the shares were transferred against loans.

Data from the Registrar of Companies and KREDL shows that a sister concern of Dishaa Power, Abletech Electro Engineers, also got a KREDL contract for a 5 MW small hydro project between 2012-13.

Company records of Dishaa Power show that 57 per cent stake in the company is held by Hong Kong-based firm Rainbow Energy Ltd, which has Naveen Patil, Bangkok resident Bhupinder Singh Koknutphongchai and a Hong Kong-based financial services provider, Cheung Hing Chik, as its shareholders.

Apart from PSK Finance, multiple companies such as Millenium Vinimay and Sri Rama Doota Infra linked to Mohan’s family, including his father, mother and son, received loans from firms such as Divyasree Infrastructure Projects (Rs 5 crore), Vee Nine Builders (Rs 2 crore), Gemini Shares and Stocks (Rs 1.25 crore) and Jai Gopal Parwahan (Rs 1.16 crore) during 2012-15.

The CID raid on the apartment from which cash and jewellery were recovered, leading to the corruption investigation against Mohan, reportedly followed a “tip-off” on the presence of money there linked to cricket betting.

The huge cache is now also the subject of an illegal assets investigation by the Karnataka Lokayukta against Mohan and his wife Richa Saxena, who is a government health department employee.

As part of the probe, the Lokayukta police is studying firms that received contracts or projects from government units where the IAS officer served in recent years. That includes his tenure over the past four years as the MD of KREDL and as the MD of Krishna Bhagya Jala Nigam Ltd in the water resouces (irrigation) department. The budget of Krishna Bhagya Jala Nigam last year was a record Rs 3,116 crore.

The pattern of investments flowing into companies linked to Mohan’s family is also being investigated. “It is quite clear that several shell companies were created with the ultimate aim of showing black money as white. These companies did not do any actual business but existed to launder funds,” Lokayukta sources said.

Investigations through the Registrar of Companies also show the links between other firms granted projects by KREDL in recent years and companies linked to the IAS officer. This includes sister concerns of Sri Rama Doota Infra Private Limited, where Mohan’s father Naresh is a director since March 2013. Biradar Hydro Energy, Adithya Green Power, Kodekal Basaveshwara Power Generation, all firms whose director Subhash Biradar is also a director in Srimaan Greenenergy Pvt Ltd, a sister concern of Sri Rama Doota Infra, were alloted small hydro projects.

Mohan, who has approached the Karnataka High Court against the disproportionate assets probe, has claimed that as a government servant he had no links with business or firms run by his family members. “I have not heard of this company called Dishaa Power. I was in KREDL three years ago, holding additional charge, and have not heard of the company. I have no political support and I am up against charges all alone,” Mohan told The Sunday Express.

“The allegations against the IAS officer pertain to a period before his appointment in the youth empowerment and sports ministry. A probe is on and the government will take action in due course. There is not much work for the officer in any case in this department,” Youth Empowerment and Sports Minister K Abhaychandra said.

“We do not have any information regarding the links between Dishaa Power Corporation and the former KREDL MD,” Energy Secretary and Karnataka Additional Chief Secretary P Ravikumar claimed. Energy Minister D K Shivakumar did not respond to phone calls or messages. A secretary said he was away on a personal tour.

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