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Ex-J’khand CM Madhu Koda, 7 others get bail

Ex-J’khand CM Madhu Koda, 7 others get bail
Former Jharkhand Chief Minister Madhu Koda and seven others including ex-Coal Secretary H C Gupta and ex-Jharkhand Chief Secretary Ashok Kumar Basu were granted bail by a special court on Wednesday in connection with a coal block allocation scam case.

“I have admitted them to bail,” Special CBI Judge Bharat Parashar said.

The court enlarged the eight accused on bail on furnishing personal bonds each of Rs one lakh with a surety of the like amount.

The court has now fixed the case for further proceedings on March 4.

Earlier in the day, the CBI had opposed the bail pleas of Koda and seven others alleging that they have conspired and abused their position to favour accused firm Vini Iron and Steel Udyog Ltd (VISUL) in allocation of a coal block.

The agency had told Special CBI Judge that Koda, Basu and Gupta, being politicians and public servants, might influence the witnesses in the matter.

Senior public prosecutor V K Sharma also told the court that Gupta had “misled” the Prime Minister’s Office regarding the recommendation made by screening committee, of which he was the Chairman at that time.

Koda, Basu, Gupta, public servants Bipin Bihari Singh and Basant Kumar Bhattacharya, Kolkata-based VISUL’s Director Vaibhav Tulsyan, Chartered Accountant Navin Kumar Tulsyan and Koda’s alleged close aide Vijay Joshi, appeared in the court following the summons issued against them.

All the eight accused were present in the court and separate bail pleas were moved by their advocates on their behalf.

The case pertains to alleged irregularities in allocation of Jharkhand’s Rajhara North coal block to VISUL. Seeking bail, counsel for Koda and seven others accused told the court that their clients had co-operated during the investigation and there was no need to send them to judicial custody. The court after hearing the arguments on the bail pleas, had reserved its order for later on Wednesday.
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