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Illegal coal blocks will be cancelled: SC

Hearing the PIL on the allocation of coal blocks, the Supreme Court on Tuesday said the allocation of coal blocks prima facie seemed to be arbitrary and the procedure adopted by the government does not appear to be legal. It warned of cancelling the blocks if procedures were not followed.

An apex court bench headed by Justice RM Lodha also directed the government to explain why a small group of companies have been picked and chosen for allocation of coal blocks out of the large number of companies that applied for it. The court also asked the CBI director to file an affidavit that the status report submitted by it on 8 March was vetted by him and not shared with political executives and the same will be followed in future.

The court said that if it was found that the government has not followed any procedure in the allocation of the blocks, then all the allocations will be cancelled. The court said it will first examine the legality of the allocation of the blocks and then the CBI will look into the criminality, if any, in the allocation.

The bench was hearing two PILs seeking cancellation of the distribution process  and SIT probe into the coal block allocation scam.
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