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‘CAG was ‘very kind’ in assessing losses of coal blocks allocations’

‘CAG was ‘very kind’ in assessing losses of coal blocks allocations’
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CAG was “very kind” when it put losses incurred due to coal blocks allocation between 2006 and 2010 at Rs 1.86 lakh crore, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said tonight while highlighting that auction being undertaken by the present government had reaped much more revenue.

The NDA government did what former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh could not do in his tenure despite being “uncomfortable with the discretions being exercised” in coal blocks allocations, Jaitley said in Rajya Sabha while replying to the debate on General Budget.

“It was Dr Manmohan Singh, who within two months of taking over as Prime Minister, said coal blocks should be auctioned,” he said.After the scam in coal blocks allocation came to light, the Supreme Court had cancelled 204 such allotments. Justifying the Modi government’s decision to auction coal blocks and mines and bring new bills in this regard, Jaitley said effort was being made to “get rid of those discretions” and ensure that the “whole law is smoothened out”.

He said auctions of just 33 blocks so far has fetched Rs 2.13 lakh crore to the government kitty, surpassing former CAG Vinod Rai’s estimates of Rs 1.86 lakh crore losses to the state exchequer on account of allocations of 204 blocks without auctions.

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