Coalgate files ‘missing’, says coal minister
In a new twist, coal minister Sriprakash Jaiswal on Saturday admitted that some files related to the coal block allocation scam are missing, remarks that drew attack from opposition parties.
‘It is true that some files from 1993 to 2004 are missing. Attempts are on, we are in touch with CMPDIL, ministry of steel. If they have the files, they should make it available,’ he said.
A committee headed by an additional secretary of the ministry is inquiring into how the files have gone missing. It will also coordinate with other government departments for tracing their copies of the missing files, Jaiswal said.
When asked how many files are missing, the coal minister said that he does not have exact information about them and it could be 8-10 or more, while terming the issue of missing files as matter of concern.
The CBI, on 31 July, had said that at least five crucial files related to allotment of coal blocks during 2006-09 have not been received by it despite providing specific details.
CBI has so far registered 13 cases related to block allotments during 2006-09 for alleged misrepresentation of facts by the beneficiaries while applying for the blocks.
In June, the coal ministry had constituted an inter-ministerial panel to look into the issue of missing files. The panel has so far held one meeting.
Some time back, the coal ministry had informed a parliamentary committee that it is trying to locate lost and missing files on coal block allocation in the wake of Supreme Court saying the Centre for not aiding CBI with documents in its probe.